It’s a sport that has struggled with doping controversies in India in the past decade—an alarming number of Indian lifters have been banned, some for life, for repeated offences. The Indian Weightlifting Federation itself was banned by the international body, and only managed to get its athletes into the Commonwealth Games at the last minute after paying a hefty fine. This is a sport that has brought India’s apathetic approach to sports administration into sharp focus, and will hopefully help it make a comeback with a good medal haul at home.
Also see | Weightlifting (pdf)
A core sport, weightlifting debuted at the 1950 Auckland Games and has featured in every single edition since. As much a test of the athlete’s physical and mental strength as mastery over technique, the sport also finds representation for disabled athletes through para-powerlifting events organized at the Games. Australia and England have the richest medal hauls in the sport, but India is close behind. More recently, the women’s teams from India have emerged triumphant consistently at the Games, having won 14 gold medals in the last two editions alone, 11 of which were won at Manchester in 2002. As always, India’s weightlifting squad will be carrying much more than the weights during the event, all the more since they will be competing on home turf.