After finishing just outside the medals at Glasgow 2014 and Gold Coast 2018, there was finally medal joy for both para-powerlifter Micky Yule and wheelchair racer Samantha Kinghorn, with emotional scenes on day seven of the Birmingham 2022 Games.
Kinghorn secured Team Scotland’s first medal of the day with a brilliant bronze in the Women’s T53/54 1500m, breaking away with Australian duo Madison de Rozario and Angela Ballard and powering home to a podium place, just pipped on the line by Ballard for silver. Fellow Scot Melanie Woods put in a fantastic performance for fourth. There was also a fifth place finish for Nick Percy in the Men’s Discus final.
Across the city Micky Yule, one of Team Scotland’s flagbearers at the Opening Ceremony eight days ago, was making his own piece of history. Injured by an improvised explosive device whilst serving in Afghanistan in 2010, an injury that required more than 40 operations and left him a double amputee, Micky lifted 192kg in the Para-Powerlifting Heavyweight final to take his first Commonwealth Games medal after finishing fourth at the past two Games.
Melanie Innes and Robert Barr, with their directors George Miller and Sarah-Jane Ewing, are in the mixed para pairs B2/B3 gold medal match after a terrific semi-final success against England. The duo won 21-6 in a fantastic performance that saw them lead from the third end. The Scots will play in tomorrow’s final at noon against Wales and will add a third para medal to this Games’ collection.
Iain McLean beat Ross Davis of Jersey 21-13 in the men’s singles bowls to get his day off to a great start, and then followed up with an important 21-4 victory over Shannon McIlroy of New Zealand. The wins will see McLean feature in the men’s singles quarter finals. Scotland’s men’s fours also had a successful day as they defeated South Africa 15-10 and New Zealand 18-10, also claiming a quarter finals spot.
Day seven saw the start of the Rhythmic Gymnastics competition in Arena Birmingham, and Louise Christie was in action representing Team Scotland in the Individual Qualification. Some incredible technical performances from the first Scottish gymnast to represent Team GB in six years saw her qualify for the All-Around competition tomorrow, and for the Clubs and Ribbon apparatus finals on Saturday.
The streets of Wolverhampton were lined the whole way for the Road Cycling Time Trial as the riders were treated to an incredible atmosphere. Last off for Team Scotland was John Archibald, and fresh from an excellent track meet, he was looking to produce another high-quality ride, and that is exactly what he did, finishing in 6th behind a quintet of world class riders. Mark Stewart and Finn Crockett were also in action in the men’s event and produced similarly good rides to take 14th and 22nd respectively, the latter on his Commonwealth Games debut, having only been called up for this event two days ago to replace the injured Kyle Gordon.
The women’s race saw double track medallist Neah Evans joined by road pro Anna Shackley. Shackley, from Milngavie, produced a focused effort on a lumpy course; fifth through the first checkpoint she looked on course for a great ride, but faded slightly in the second half of the race, to eventually round out 10th. Evans finished in a solid 17th place.
Bantamweight Matty McHale and Welterweight Tyler Jolly increased the number of guaranteed Boxing medals by defeating their quarter final opponents from Malaysia and Papua New Guinea with a third round stoppage and unanimous decision respectively. Even though he fought with tremendous heart, Flyweight Lennon Mulligan could not join them in the semi finals, as he suffered a unanimous decision loss to an experienced fighter from India.
Under the sun in Smithfield, Scotland’s Beach Volleyball women played their final pool match against Solomon Islands. Having lost their previous two matches against England and Vanuatu, the women had to win this match in order to progress into the competition’s quarter-finals. The first set was won easily with Beattie and Coutts taking it to 21-6 in just 13 minutes, however the second set was 22 minute a point-for-point battle. With the support from Team Scotland’s Women’s Hockey team, Lynne and Mel finally took a two point lead and brought the second set to a close with 21-16. They’ll play in a quarter final tomorrow against Australia at 14:30.
This evening saw the first of the Diving finals in Sandwell Aquatics Centre and first up were the men on the 1m Springboard, Scotland represented by James Heatly, Danny Mabbott and Ross Beattie. All three finished in the top ten with James in fourth, Danny ninth and Ross tenth. Next in action was Gemma McArthur in the 10m Platform. Gemma improved on her Gold Coast finish in the same event, ending the day in ninth place.
Scotland had a winning evening in the squash mixed doubles with Lisa Aitken and Greg Lobban enjoying a 2-0 victory Marlene West and Cameron Stafford of the Cayman Islands; and Georgia Adderlay and Rory Stewart also winning 2-0 against Hollie Naughton and Nick Sachvie of Canada. In the women’s doubles Georgia Adderlay and Lisa Aitken enjoyed a 2-0 win over New Zealand’s Kaitlin Watts and Abbie Palmer.
Kirsty Gilmour, Callum Smith, Matt Grimley, Eleanor O’Donnell, Adam Hall, Julie MacPherson and Chris Grimley were all in Badminton action on Day Seven, and made it through to their respective Round of 16 matches over the coming days.
Unfortunately the Mixed Doubles and Men’s Doubles Table Tennis pairings of both Rebecca Plaistow and Gavin Rumgay with Colin Dalgleish could not get past opponents from Australia and England to make their own Last 16 match ups. In their fifth and final Pool Match, the Netball team were defeated 64-46 by South Africa.