Top 10 Indian athletes set to miss Commonwealth Games 2022
The sport of Shooting and Archery have been excluded due to lack of infrastructure and logistical reasons.
The 2022 Commonwealth Games (CWG) are only a few days away. With the city of Birmingham set to host the event, the anticipation is high before its start from 28 July 2022 onwards. There will be several high-profile athletes from multiple countries around the world taking part in various disciplines. The aim will be to collect as many medals as possible for their respective nations.
India is a strong performer at the Commonwealth Games. Since the turn of the century, the country has won more than 50 medals in every edition. The Indian contingent won 66 medals with 26 golds during the 2018 edition in Gold Coast, Australia. There will be high expectations from the 215-member contingent to deliver medals at the 2022 CWG.
However, there will be several notable athletes that will not feature at the multi-sport event. Their lack of presence will certainly affect India’s ambition of winning medals at the games. Here is a look at the top 10 Indian athletes that will not play at the 2022 Commonwealth Games:
Shooting is one of the disciplines that will not feature at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. This is a massive blow to India’s medal hopes since it's a major source of success for the country. Several high-profile shooting athletes will miss out due to the sport’s exclusion. One of them is Apurvi Chandela, who is an Olympian and a three-time gold medal winner in the ISSF World Cup. She also won bronze at the 2018 CWG and gold at the 2014 CWG.
Tajinderpal Singh Toor
Tajinderpal Singh Toor was one of the major hopes for a medal at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The 2018 Asian Games gold medal winner in the shot put had to retire prematurely from the ongoing 2022 World Athletics Championships qualifiers. A groin injury was the reason for his withdrawal from the event and it will keep him away from the 2022 CWG as well.
National record-holder in the triple jump, Aishwarya Babu will not take part in the upcoming event in Birmingham. This is because the athlete failed a dope test earlier in July 2022. She broke an 11-year-old record in the triple jump event and was part of the athletics squad at the 2022 CWG. Since the athlete’s sample has returned positive for a banned substance, she will be unable to represent India.
MC Mary Kom
MC Mary Kom will be sorely missed by the Indian contingent at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The 2012 London Olympics bronze medallist injured her leg in the national trials semi-final bout against Nitu. This rules out the legendary six-time World Champion from competing at the multi-sport event. The 39-year-old may never feature in a CWG edition again.
Manu Bhaker will be unable to win medals for India at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. This is because of shooting’s exclusion from the list of disciplines. The 20-year-old is a force in the shooting sphere, with nine World Cup gold medals already on her resume. She also won a gold at the 2018 CWG in Gold Coast. Manu Bhaker was of the belief that India should boycott the 2022 Commonwealth Games for not including shooting in the competition, to send a message to the organisers.
Aishwary Pratap Singh
It is a cruel joke that shooting is not part of the Commonwealth Games' list of disciplines. It hurts India the most since athletes like Aishwary Pratap Singh will not be able to feature. He has recently won individual gold at the 2022 ISSF World Cup and could have been a strong prospect for India in Birmingham.
Mairaj Ahmed Khan
Mairaj Ahmed Khan will also miss out on the chance of representing India at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Due to the exclusion of shooting, the veteran won’t be able to follow up his first-ever gold from the 2022 ISSF World Cup in Changwon, South Korea. By doing so, he became the first Indian to win gold in the skeet event at the ISSF World Cup.
Rani Rampal led the Indian women’s hockey team to a historic fourth-place finish at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Since then, she has been struggling with injuries. She could not feature at the FIH Women’s World Cup due to injury concerns and was also dropped from the final squad for the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The 27-year-old will be a huge miss for the Indian women’s hockey team.
World No.1 archer Deepika Kumari will be missing the 2022 Commonwealth Games. This is due to archery’s exclusion from the list of disciplines at the multi-sport event. The two-time CWG gold medal winner would have been a strong medal prospect if archery was part of the quadrennial event.
Saina Nehwal is the reigning gold medal winner in Women’s Singles after her heroics at the 2018 CWG in Gold Coast, Australia. The former World No.1 and 2012 London Olympics bronze medal winner will be one of the absentees for India in Birmingham. Fearing worsening of her injuries, she chose to skip the week-long BAI Selection trials in April which would select the squad for the 2022 CWG.