India launched their campaign in the 20th Commonwealth Games with a flourish with judokas Navjot Chana and Shushila Likmabam assuring the team of at least two medals while the paddlers, shuttlers and squash players had easy outings on the opening day of competitions here today.
The 30-year-old Chana of Punjab and Manipuri judoka Sushila, 19, were the star performers for the Indian contingent as they romped into the finals of their respective weight categories.
In the men's 60 kg, Chana defeated Daniel Le Grange of South Africa in just 1 minute and 51 seconds to storm into the medal round. He will take on Ashley McKenzie of England in the final later in the day. In the women's section, Shushila Likmabam reached the finals in the 48 kg category defeating Aussie rival Chloe Rayner in two minutes and 23 seconds. Sushila got a couple of Wazaris which is equivalent to an 'Ippon' which finished the bout. She will lock horns with Kimberley Renicks of Scotland in the final.
She had earlier defeated Amy Meyer of Australia in 2 minutes and 38 seconds in the quarter-finals while she got better of Mani Medza Effe of Cameroon in a minute and 41 seconds in the pre quarter finals.
Two more Indians -- Kalpana Thoudam (women's 52kg) and Manjeet Nandal (men's 66kg) are also in contention for a bronze medal. Both lost in the quarter-finals but won their respective repechage round bouts to keep themselves in the reckoning for a bronze medal.
While the swimmers and cyclists failed to make much of an impact, it turned out to be a relatively sweat-free day for the paddlers, shuttlers and squash players as they trounced their first round opponents.