Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: As the whole world witnessed a glittering opening ceremony of the 21st edition of the Commonwealth Games at the Carrara Stadium in Gold Coast in Australia today, a total of eight Odia athletes are aiming to make Odisha proud at the 12-day mega sporting extravaganza.

While Hockey ace Amit Rohidas will be the only Odia player in the male hockey team representing the country, Lilima Minz, Deep Grace Ekka, Namita Toppo and Sunita Lakra have booked their berths in the women's hockey team.

Similarly, in the track and field event, athlete Purnima Hembram will represent India in the Heptathlon event and Gymnast Rakesh Patra will participate in artistic gymnastics. Weightlifter Saraswati Routh will be seen competing in the 58 kg category in women's weightlifting.

A strong Indian contingent of 227 participants will look to better the country’s previous showings at the Games.

At the previous edition of Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, India's medal tally stood at 64 medals with 15 gold, 30 silver and 19 bronze medals.

A total of around 4,300 participants representing 71 nations will compete in 275 events across 19 disciplines at the Games which will conclude on April 15.