Listed below are some notable athletes who have done exceedingly well in the Commonwealth Games.
- Dawn Fraser
One of only three swimmers (other than Krisztina Egerszegi and Michael Phelps) to have won the same swimming event in three successive Olympics, Dawn Fraser is arguably one the greatest female swimmers in History. The first woman to swim the 100m fly in under one minute, she won four Gold medals in the 110 yards freestyle, 440 yards freestyle, 4×110 yards freestyle relay and the 4×110 yards medley relay at the Perth Commonwealth Games in 1962.
It was known that her first tryst with the British Empire Games, was in Cardiff in 1958, where she had won a Gold in the 110 yards freestyle and the 4×110 yards freestyle relay, and a Silver in both the 440 yards freestyle and the 4×110 yards medley.
- Mick GaultMick Gault happens to be one of the most decorated Commonwealth competitors from England, who retired after the 2010 Commonwealth Games, Delhi as he fell short of winning his 18th medal. In an astonishing career, he accumulated 17 Commonwealth medals, but never competed at the Olympics.In 2006, he became England’s most successful Commonwealth Games athlete, surpassing swimmer Karen Pickering’s 13 medals.
- Ian Thorpe
With 10 Commonwealth Games Gold medals, Ian Thorpe or “Thorpedo”, as he was more popularly known, is surely one of the top performers in the history of this multi-disciplinary event.At the 1998 Kuala Lumpur edition, at a young age of 15 years old, the swimmer made the world sit up and take notice, as he won a total of four medals for Australia in 200m and 400m freestyle and two Gold medal relay teams. As mentioned above, he consequently improved his tally at Manchester.
- Samaresh Jung
Indian Shooter Jung happens to be an air pistol specialist. The Arjuna Award winner won two Gold medals, in the men’s free pistol pairs and in the open event of 25 m standard pistol pairs, both in partnership with Jaspal Rana in the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games.At the Melbourne edition, he won five Gold, one Silver and one Bronze medal, ensuring that he was bestowed with the David Dixon Award, given to the “Best Athlete of the Games”. It was also during these games that we was nicknamed the ‘Gold finger’ because of his exploits in the range.
- Precious McKenzie
One of those rare double nationals, Precious McKenzie, a South African by origin, is a former weightlifter who won Commonwealth titles representing both England and New Zealand. He represented England in the 1966, 1970 and 1974 editions of the game and won Gold medals in all three attempts.As a result of the contacts made during the 1974 Commonwealth Games in Christchurch, New Zealand, he decided to settle in that country and work as a weight trainer in a gym, rather than operate as a factory worker. He thus, returned in the 1978 Edmonton edition of the game to win a medal for New Zealand.
- Chris Hoy
The most successful Olympic cyclist of all time, Sir Chris Hoy will most certainly be the face of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games. Also, an eleven time world champion, he is undoubtedly one of Scotland’s and Great Britain’s most decorated athletes of all time.At the Commonwealth stage, this legend however has a relatively mediocre record, having participated in the 2002 and 2006 editions of the game, he has acquired only four medals (two Gold and two Bronze).
- Stephanie Rice
This charismatic swimming sensation from the Australia announced her arrival at the world stage, when she won three Gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. Subsequently, she was declared as the Telstra Australian Swimmer in the same year. She also participated in the 2006 edition of Commonwealth Games and scalped the Gold in the 200 meter individual medley.Subjected to a lot of controversy after a recent post from her twitter handle, Rice retired from the sport last April.
- Natalie du Toit
Swimmer Natalie du Toit burst into the limelight, when she became one of only two Paralympians to compete at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. A multiple Gold medallist from the Paralympics, in 2004 she had narrowly missed qualifying for the Beijing Games.As far as Commonwealth Games are concerned, Natalie has an exceptional record. She took part in the 1998 edition at a tender age of 14. But it was only in the 2002 Manchester games she was recognized. She won the multi-disability 50 m freestyle and the multi-disability 100 m freestyle in world record time. A true legend of the game, she repeated the same feat in the 2006 edition, winning two Gold medals again.
- Jaspal Rana
Arjuna Awardee Jaspal Rana is known to specialize in the 25 m Centre Fire Pistol category. A multiple Gold medallist from the Asian and Commonwealth Games, Rana won Gold medals in Men’s Center Fire Pistol and Men’s Center Fire Pistol Pairs at the 1998 edition at Kuala Lumpur. He again managed Gold in 2002 and 2006, in the Men’s 25m Center Fire Pistol.
- Trecia-Kaye Smith
The Commonwealth Games have remained a special platform for this Jamaican triple jumper, for it was here in 2002 that she first burst into limelight. Having finished third then, her real journey ascent began in 2005, when she set a new world record at the World Championships at Helsinki. She added to her Commonwealth tally over 2006 and 2010, winning Gold both the times.She is also one of the three athletes to be bestowed with the David Dixon Award which is given to the most outstanding athlete of an edition of the Commonwealth Games.