The pugalist had left the event midway through.

Olympic bronze medallst Lovlina Borgohain was left stranded for close to an hour after she left midway during the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games 2022.

The opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games 2022 was held on Thursday night – 28th July. Lovlina Borgohain was one of the few attendees from the Indian contingent.

The ceremony, held at the Alexander Stadium, went on for about two hours. Midway through the ceremony, Lovlina decided to leave for the Games Village near the National Exhibition Centre, The village is a 30-minute drive from the venue of the opening ceremony.

She was accompanied by Muhammad Hussamuddin. Hussamuddin is also a member of the Indian boxing team. Both were left stranded for close to an hour as they were unable to book a taxi on their own. 

Left for practice 

“We want to train in the morning as we have a bout day after. The ceremony will go on for a while so we thought of leaving. We asked for a taxi but we were told that was not available,” said Lovlina when PTI asked her the reason for leaving the ceremony midway.

The organisers had assigned three cars to the Indian delegation. However, the car drivers left for their homes as the athletes and officials arrived for the opening ceremony in buses. Ultimately, Lovlina and Hussamuddin had to take the first bus bound for the Village.

Chef de Mission not pleased

Rajesh Bhandari, India’s Chef de Mission, reacted to this development by letting his displeasure known. “We were in the middle of the ceremony and I got to know later that she and another boxer left early. We all came in buses and taxi option was not available at that time. They shouldn’t have come if they wanted to leave early.

“There were so many athletes who decided not to come as they had training or competition in the morning, which we completely understand. I will be speaking to the boxing team on this matter,” said Bhandari, who happens to be the vice-president of the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) as well.

Badminton star PV Sindhu and the men’s hockey team captain Manpreet Singh led a total of 164 athletes and officials in the ceremony, which is half the Indian contingent’s size. Many, including the women’s cricket team, decided to stay back in the hotel due to their respective competitions the following day.

Lovlina had to face trouble in the build-up too. Upon arrival, her personal coach Sandhya Gurung was not allowed inside the Games Village. The officials stepped in and Gurung was later given the Village accreditation.

Lovlina (70kg) will take part in the women’s Light Middleweight category. In the first round, she is drawn against Ariane Nicholson of New Zealand. The bout is scheduled on Saturday – 30th July.

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