Indian lifter Gururaja Poojary opened the Indian medal tally at the Commonwealth Games 2018 at Gold Coast after he clinched silver in the men’s 56 kg category. He started perfectly and took the lead at his very first attempt in the snatch with a successful lift of 107 kilograms. However, he failed in his second attempt of 111 kg. He still managed to lift that weight in his third and final attempt to take the lead. Despite making a comeback in the competition, he couldn’t reach the top spot as Malaysia’s Izhar Ahmed took the gold.
Ahmed not only clinched the first position but also bettered his previous records and set a new milestone of 61 kilograms. He cleared 144 kg in the clean and jerk which was his personal best. Apart from Ahmed and Gururaja, Sri Lanka’s Chaturanga Lakmal won bronze with a total of 248 kg. He managed to lift 114 kg in the snatch and 134 kg in clean and jerk.
Right after the Indian lifter took the first-ever medal for India, social media was flooded with congratulations. People poured in to wish for the milestone he achieved. Here’re some of the reactions:
— Ishant Sharma (@ImIshant) April 5, 2018
Bravo India’s 1st Medal !#GuruRaja won silver #Medal at the @GC2018 lifting total weight of 249 Kg in the Men’s 56kg event !
Congrats GuruRaja for making India proud #GC2018Weightlifting pic.twitter.com/lsyn0ftBPB
— Maj Surendra Poonia (@MajorPoonia) April 5, 2018
— Naveen Jindal (@MPNaveenJindal) April 5, 2018
According to several media reports, Gururaja is a low-ranked Indian Air Force employee and is a son of a truck driver. He initially wanted to be a wrestler. Later, he pushed into weightlifting under a watchful coach who saw potential in him.