A list of 10 memorable moments from the 2014 Commonwealth Games
Sunday, Aug 03, 2014 10:45 am
GLASGOW, Scotland - Here are some of the memorable moments from the 2014 Commonwealth Games:
Bolt Charms Scotland
Despite having to deny making disparaging remarks about the host city, Usain Bolt wowed fans with both his speed and showmanship in Glasgow. The world's fastest man charmed the crowd at Hampden Park before, during and after Jamaica's victory in the 4x100-metre relay — dancing, posing for pictures and parading around the track with the Jamaican and Scottish flags while sporting a tartan hat. A six-time Olympic gold medallist, Bolt stood atop a Commonwealth podium for the first time, and it hardly mattered to those in attendance that he didn't take part in any individual events.
A Monarch's Sense of Humour
Queen Elizabeth II officially opened the Games on July 23 after Scottish cycling great Chris Hoy presented a baton which had travelled throughout the Commonwealth after starting at Buckingham Palace last year. The 88-year-old showed her lighter side when Hoy and the president of the Commonwealth Games Federation, Prince Tunku Imran, struggled to retrieve her message that was sealed inside. When the piece of paper was finally recovered after a few awkward moments, the Queen held her arms out and smiled.
Fans poured into venues with tremendous enthusiasm across Glasgow for both preliminary and medal events. Crowds often cheered for underdog countries, unless they were taking on the hosts, who were always supported with thunderous noise. It has become commonplace in recent years for international sporting events to be plagued by concerns about security, the readiness of venues, ticket sales and the weather, with the recent World Cup and Winter Olympics as just two examples. But there were no such headlines in the leadup to, or during the Commonwealth Games, which ran smoothly from start to finish.
A Kid Tests Positive
Chika Amalaha, a 16-year-old Nigerian weightlifter, was stripped of her gold medal after testing positive for diuretics and masking agents. She had initially become the youngest female to win a weightlifting title at a Commonwealth Games after finishing tops in the 53-kilogram division.
Canada's Third-place Showing
The Canadian team found itself all the way down in sixth early in the Games, but climbed up the medals standings thanks to a string of impressive performances in swimming, track and field, wrestling and rhythmic gymnastics. Officials predicted a No. 3 finish before the event, and it was mission accomplished, but Canada was still well behind first-place England and second-place Australia.
Patricia Bezzoubenko won six medals in rhythmic gymnastics for Canada, including five gold. The Vancouver-born Bezzoubenko, who grew up in Moscow and also trains there, won the individual all-around title and led Canada to a victory in the team event. The 17-year-old added gold in the hoop, ball and clubs, before finishing third in the ribbon.
Cochrane Dominates Again
The elder statesman on Canada's swim team at the age of 25, Ryan Cochrane repeated his double-gold performance in the pool from four years ago, winning the men's 400- and 1,500-metre freestyle races. The Victoria native said before the Games it would be difficult to duplicate his performance from New Delhi, but after his stunning comeback win in the 400, he won the 1,500 going away. A two-time Olympic medallist, Cochrane has said he will retire after Rio de Janeiro 2016.
James Steacy of Lethbridge, Alta., won gold in hammer throw and tearfully dedicated the victory to his mom, who died suddenly in April. Glasgow marked the 30-year-old Steacy's first major international win since claiming gold at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio.
Catharine Pendrel of Kamloops, B.C., crushed the field to win the women's mountain bike. The 33-year-old took the lead on the first of six laps, and never looked back to win going away. Emily Batty of Brooklin, Ont., was second for a 1-2 Canadian finish. Pendrel declined her Sport Canada funding this season — which amounted to $1,500 — so that a younger cyclist could benefit from the financial support.
Distance runner Cam Levins won his first international medal with a bronze in a thrilling men's 10,000 metres. The 25-year-old from Black Creek, B.C., took the lead on the final lap and led down the straightaway until he was caught about five metres from the finish line, missing gold by barely a tenth of a second.