Giving India a flying a start on the opening day of the 21st edition of the Commonwealth Games, weightlifter Gururaja on Thursday opened Indian contingent’s medal tally with the silver medal at Gold Coast in Australia. The 25-year old made his CWG debut at Gold Coast and levelled his personal best of 249kg to clinch India’s first medal. Speaking to media after his triumphant silver medal win, a jubilant Gururaja said he feels happy about having the opportunity to open India’s medal tally at Gold Coast.
While Gururaja Poojary got the silver medal, Malaysia’s Muhammad Azroy Hazalwafie Izhar clinched the mighty gold after making history with his record total of lifting 261KG. Azroy’s opponent Gururaja lifted his level best weight of 111kg before adding 138kg in his third attempt to register a total lift of 249kg. Born in Karnataka, Gururaja began weightlifting back in 2010 and is the son of a pickup-truck driver. The silver medallist at gold Coast comes from Kundapura. The 25-year old in his previous heroics bagged gold at the 2016 South Asian Games. He also won gold in Commonwealth senior weightlifting championship in the same year.
Gururaja admitted that he came nowhere close to his level best on the opening day of Commonwealth Games at Gold Coast. The powerlifter was glad to open India’s account at Gold Coast. “I am very happy to have opened India’s medal account in the Games. It was nowhere close to being my best performance but I am glad that it was enough to get me a silver medal,” Gururaja was quoted as saying by Doordarshan. “I didn’t quite understand why my second lift was not declared valid. It was disallowed for a very minor movement of the arm. Had it been allowed I could have gone for a higher lift and perhaps target gold. But still I am happy,” the Karnataka lifter added.