Gold Coast: Indian weightlifters brought the country medals on 5 April despite the absence of a basic requirement in their camp: a physiotherapist. Mirabai Chanu (48kg) smashed snatch, clean and jerk and the overall Games record on Thursday to claim India’s first gold of the ongoing edition, while P Gururaja (56 kg) overcame a few nervy minutes to clinch a silver in the men’s competition. Neither of them had a physio.
“I don’t have a physio with me here in the competition. He was not allowed here, I did not get enough treatment coming into the competition. There is nobody, we did tell officials but nothing happened,” Chanu said after her record-breaking gold-winning performance that earned her a standing ovation from the fans here.
There is nobody with these athletes to take care of their aches and niggles during a demanding day.
“I had requested that my physio be allowed but he has not been allowed. But we are helping each other and managing so far,” she added with a smile.
Competing in the 48 kg category, Chanu, who had claimed a silver at the 2014 CWG, was a sure shot medal prospect for India as her personal best of 194kg stood over 10 kg more than her nearest rival in the competition.
Gururaja, the soft-spoken wannabe-wrestler-turned-weightlifter from Karnataka, also spoke about the problems he faced.
“I’ve sustained multiple injuries. My physio is not here, so I haven’t been able to get the treatment that I need for my knee and sciatic nerve,” he said.
Sciatic nerve begins in the lower back and runs through to the lower limb, making it the longest and widest single nerve in the human body.
Despite repeated attempts, the Indian Chef-de-Mission Vikram Sisodia was unavailable for comment on the matter.
The size of the contingent was a major issue prior to the Games after the Sports Ministry ordered that the number of officials should not be more than 33% of the number of athletes.
As a result, several athletes had complained about their preferred support staff not making the official contingent.