The Commonwealth Games 2018 kicked off in Australia with a grand opening ceremony at Gold Coast. With a strong message of unity, the Commonwealth Games were declared open by the Prince of Wales with great pomp and joy. Despite heavy rain, a strong crowd of 35,000 was present at the Carrara Stadium to join in the festivities.
The ceremony celebrated Australian culture and began with a message on the screen that said: “Welcome to the oldest living culture on Earth.” The ceremony was a kaleidoscope of colour as one was taken through space and time as beautiful visuals covered the entire stadium with the Milky Way. The huge and beautifully designed stadium was lit up under a shower of fireworks which added to the beauty of the stadium ten times. The baton was carried by famous Aussie Susie O’Neill much to the delight of the entire stadium.
Scotland leads out the European countries to the field with Cyprus and England following suit. The Queensland Symphony Orchestra and the Queensland Youth Orchestra played melodious tunes as the accompanied the countries. Botswana, Cameroon and Ghana were next to follow with the athletes dressed in their local attire and singing and celebrating the ceremony, dancing and waving flags of their countries as they were cheered on by the spectators. The Asian countries were next to follow suit with the Indian contingent being lead by PV Sindhu. Katie Noonan and the Gold Coast Choir performed You’re Welcome Here as the contingents of all 71 participating countries ended their march onto to field.
The opening ceremony also showcased ceremonies going on simultaneously at other locations across Queensland to mark the start of the tournament. Louise Martin CBE, President of the Commonwealth Games Federation: “The Commonwealth is now more relevant than ever before,” she said as she spoke to mark open the games. Going on to celebrate gender equity in these games as well as the Reconciliation Action Plan and the integration of para-sports.
The grand ceremony came to an end in style with people dancing and coloured lights everywhere.
Day 1 kick-started in the perfect style for India with Miraba Chainu winning the first gold for the country in the 48kg weightlifting event. Gururaja Poojray added to India’s tally by winning silver in the 56kg category weightlifting event.