England rules the roost as Glasgow 2014 ends


EMMA-POOLEYGLASGOW, August 3- England triumphed in the Commonwealth Games medals table for the first time in 28 years on Sunday, but there were final day consolations for former top dog Australia with wins in the men’s hockey and in the netball.

England started the day already assured of top spot in the medals table for the first time since 1986, dethroning Australia.

They had 165 total medals, with 56 of them being gold, while Australia had 132, 45 of gold, and just 11 events to be decided on a rain-hit final day, not all of which had Australians competing.

Lizzie Armitstead then struck further gold for England in the women’s cycling road race going one better than four years ago in New Dehli.

Fellow English rider Emma Pooley finished 25 seconds behind to finish second and add to the silver she won in the time trial.

“I can call myself a champion finally. It’s special and something I’ve always dreamed about,” Armitstead said.

“I just feel like I deserve this. I’ve trained so hard and I’m always on the podium but I don’t win too many races.

Australia then won gold in the men’s hockey with a 4-0 thumping of India for a fifth consecutive Commonwealth title, and in the netball with a 58-40 revenge win over New Zealand, who beat them at the same stage four years ago.

There was disappointment early on for Scotland, hoping for a 20th gold medal, when Kirsty Gilmour lost 21-14, 21-7 to Canada’s Michelle Li in the badminton women’s singles final.

Games officials, meanwhile, turned out to sing the praises of the Glasgow games with Mike Hooper, CEO of the Commonwealth Games Federation calling them “the stand-out Games in the history of the movement.”

“The spirit of these Games has continued to endure,” he added.

In men’s road cycling David Millar of Scotland was looking to sign off his career with gold in the streets of central Glasgow where his career began.

But there was stern competition in prospect from the likes of Peter Kennaugh of the Isle of Man, who won silver in the men’s 40km points race on the track, and Welsh rider Geraint Thomas, who took bronze in the individual time trial.

Millar, who won road race bronze at Delhi, finished eighth in the individual time trial on Thursday.

In squash, Australia’s David Palmer and Cameron Pilley take on defending champions Nick Matthew and Adrian Grant of England in the final of the men’s doubles.

Palmer is also in the mixed doubles final alongside Rachael Grinham where the Australian pair face England’s Peter Barker and Alison Waters.

Following Li’s gold medal win in the women’s singles, there were badminton golds for second-seeded Kashyap Parupalli of India who edged Derek Wong of Singapore in three sets in the men’s singles and for the husband and wife team of Chris and Gabby Adcock defeating compatriots Chris Langridge and Heather Olver 21-9, 21-2 in the mixed doubles.

The women’s doubles title went to Malaysia’s Hoo Vivian Kah Mun and Woon Khe Wei who defeated Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa of India with the final gold still to be decided in the men’s doubles where

Tan Wee Kiong and Goh Wei Shem of Malaysia were facing Danny Chrisnanta and Chayut Triyachart of Singapore.

The closing ceremony takes place at Hampden Park from 2000GMT with the Commonwealth Games Federation flag to be entrusted to officials from Australia’s Gold Coast, the hosts of the 2018 Games.