Absence Of Shooting From Cwg 2022 Will Shrink India’S Medal Count

The 22nd edition of the Commonwealth Games is now just two days away. Thie year’s Commonwealth Games set to be hosted by Birmingham will have 20 sports. Of the 20, India will be participating in 15 and is sending 11 men and 104 women to Birmingham. The participants’ numbers would have been much higher had shooting and archery been part of the CWG 22.

The exclusion of archery and shooting from the Birmingham games is a jolt for India. Let’s look at shooting as a Commonwealth Games discipline and how its absence from CWG 2022 will shrink India’s medal count.

Why shooting was excluded from the 2022 Commonwealth Games?

A 2017 report on News18.com stated that the Commonwealth Games Federation had excluded shooting as an event for the 2022 edition of the Games.

Justifying the move, Peter Hannon, the spokesperson of Commonwealth Games in England, had said, “It’s a decision that the Birmingham bid as a whole has been made rather than just Commonwealth Games England. The Birmingham bid made an assessment of all the optional sports and they picked the sport which were enabled to take place close to Birmingham.”

The move to exclude shooting is a big blow for India.

Shooting’s history in the Commonwealth Games

Shooting as a sport was first included in the 1966 edition of the Commonwealth Games which were hosted by Jamaica. Since those Games, with the exception of the 1970 edition, shooting has been an integral part of the quadrennial event.

How shooting’s exclusion will affect India

Firstly, India has been a stronger performer at the Commonwealth Games. India has finished fifth or higher in the past five editions of the Commonwealth Games.

Edition of the Commonwealth Games Golds Silvers Bronze Total India’s position on the medal tally
2002 30 22 17 69 4th
2006 22 17 11 50 4th
2010 38 27 36 101 2nd
2014 15 30 19 64 5th
2018 26 20 20 66 3rd

India has won a total of 350 medals in these five editions of the Commonwealth Games.

What has been the shooting’s contribution to the medals won by India? Take a look at this table.

Edition of the Commonwealth Games Total medals won Medals won in shooting
2002 69 23
2006 50 27
2010 101 30
2014 64 17
2018 66 16

Shooting amounts to 113 of the 350 medals won by India in these five editions of the Games. In percentage terms, it is 32.28. In fact, India has been the second-best nation in the all-time medal tally of shooting

Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 Australia 70 60 45 175
2 India 63 44 28 135
3 England 49 60 67 176
4 Canada 39 40 38 117
5 New Zealand 15 16 21 52

(table updated after the 2018 edition of the Commonwealth Games)

India has been the best-performing nation in shooting in four of the last five editions of CWG.

Edition of the Commonwealth Games Host city Best performing nation in shooting
2002 Manchester India
2006 Melbourne India
2010 New Delhi India
2014 Glasgow Australia
2018 Gold Coast India

At Glasgow, India had finished third behind Australia and England. Another highlight in shooting was when in 2006 Indian shooter Samaresh Jung was awarded the prestigious David Dixon Award. The award which was established in 2002, is given to the outstanding athlete of each Commonwealth Games. At the Melbourne Games, Jung had clinched a staggering five golds, one silver and one bronze.

Further, a report titled “India’s Preparation for Birmingham CWG 2022” by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports stated that shooting has been India’s most productive sport in the Commonwealth Games.

The numbers say it all — Indian sports fans are in for disappointment as India’s medal tally is bound to shrink. But this is just the beginning of darker days for India in the Commonwealth Games. The CGF has confirmed that shooting will be excluded for the 2026 edition of the games, along with wrestling, and archery.

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