India to host separate Commonwealth shooting, archery event in 2022
A joint archery and shooting Commonwealth Championships will be held in India in January 2022, as a compromise event aimed to appease Indian authorities angered by shooting’s exclusion from that year’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, UK.
The Championships, a proposal from several Indian bodies which has now been approved by the Commonwealth Games Federation, will be a separate event in terms of organisation and funding to the Birmingham games, but results from the Championships will be included in the final overall medal table, issued one week after the UK event.
The CGF, the body which took the decision to launch the Indian event, said that the medal counts would be added together to give “a further and final legitimate ranking of competing nations and territories from the respective competitions.”
The CGF received the proposal from Commonwealth Games India, which was supported by that country’s government, its national rifle association, the International Shooting Sport Federation and World Archery.
CGI received approval for the original idea from the Indian government in January, and at that point insisted that results from any tournament launched should be included in the overall Birmingham games medal table.
The decision has now been discussed with representatives from the Birmingham 2022 organising committee.
Dame Louise Martin, president of the CGF, said: “Commonwealth archery and shooting athletes now have an unprecedented opportunity to compete in an elite event that will showcase the very best of Commonwealth Sport.
“The CGF would like to thank the CGI… and the government of India for the significant efforts they have taken to submit an innovative proposal with the ambition of strengthening Commonwealth Sport.”
Narinder Dhruv Batra, president of the CGI, added: “We are very pleased that our proposal was considered by the Federation… It provides more opportunities for Commonwealth athletes to compete on the world stage.”
The Commonwealth Archery and Shooting Championships 2022 will take place in Chandigarh, a city in northern India, six months before the Birmingham games in July and August.
The Indian proposal came after shooting, one of the country’s most successful sports, was omitted from the programme for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, along with archery.
The move originally prompted an Indian threat to boycott the games, but, following talks with the CGF, it was confirmed early last month that it would be sending a team to Birmingham.
Shooting was left off the programme in 2022 in large part because none of the proposed events would have been held in the Birmingham area, and therefore would not have been able to "engage with the local community," according to the organisers.
Ian Reid, the chief executive for Birmingham 2022, has now said: “We are pleased to hear that the CGF has approved the proposal for a separately organised and funded championships… There is a long tradition of Commonwealth championships being held across the globe, featuring several different sports, so it’s great news that India will be continuing this tradition.”
India, which hosted the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, is expected to bid for the 2026 or 2030 edition, and shooting would be expected to return to the programme if it is awarded the games.