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Commonwealth Games 2022 to commence at Birmingham in UK tonight

Commonwealth Games-2022 are all set to kick-start in Birmingham tonight

Commonwealth Games 2022 to commence at Birmingham in UK tonight

Commonwealth Games-2022 are all set to kick-start in Birmingham tonight. The sports extravaganza will witness the participation of 54 countries, featuring more than 5,000 athletes competing for a podium finish. The event will be held till 8th of August.

A 215-member Indian contingent, which includes 111 male players and 104 female players, will compete in 15 sporting events in Birmingham.

With Neeraj Chopra missing the games due to an injury, P. V. Sindhu and Manpreet Singh will be India's flag-bearers at Birmingham.

Though Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra has opted to sit out of the Games due to a groin strain, India has enough talent in their squad to return with a rich medal haul.

Top performers such as two-time Olympic medallist P.V. Sindhu, Tokyo Olympics silver-medallist Mirabai Chanu and a few others will be raring to prove themselves when the games begin.

While our biggest star, Neeraj Chopra, will be missing, Annu Rani will keep the Indian flag flying at the javelin competition.

Avinash Sable, the 3,000-m steeplechase runner, will also fancy his chances despite stiff competition from countries like Kenya, riding high on the confidence of having broken his own national record eight times in two years now and qualifying consistently for the finals of the world championships.

India's long jumpers and triple jumpers have been getting better and better, notching up three of the five best long jumps so far this season, consistently crossing the 8m mark-the global standard of excellence-in long jumps.

India's chances are strong in combat sports-partly because the world's best nations in boxing and wrestling are not part of the Commonwealth Games.

It should be a cakewalk for the likes of Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat, both making comebacks from injuries.

It will be harder for the boxers, but World Championships medallist Amit Panghal has a point to prove after a debacle in Tokyo saw him withdraw from the public eye and Nikhat Zareen, the current world champion, is a woman on a mission.

In badminton, P.V. Sindhu has made her best start to a season ever and will look to continue that momentum with an easy passage to the title.

Rising badminton star and World Championship medallist Lakshya Sen will look to add to his growing trophy cabinet.

And in hockey, both the men's and women's teams are on a terrific upswing (the men won their first Olympic medal in 40 years in Tokyo, the women reached the bronze playoff for the first time), though expect tough competition from the likes of South Africa, New Zealand, England and of course, the Aussies.

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