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Who Is Achinta Sheuli, the Debutant Weightlifter With India's Third CWG Gold?

Gold medallist Achinta Sheuli hails from Deulpur town near Howrah in West Bengal.

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Achinta Sheuli, a twenty-year-old weightlifter, won India's third gold medal at the Commonwealth Games 2022 on Sunday, 31 July. The debutant (weighing 73 kg) heaved 313kg (143kg+170kg) to grab the gold at NEC Hall, Birmingham in the UK.

"This was the first major event in my life and I'm thankful for them to help me reach here. This medal will help me in every aspect of life. There should not be looking back from now on," Sheuli said after his victory.

He added, "I'm very happy about this, I've worked hard for this medal. A lot of sacrifices of my brother, mother, my coach and the Army have gone into this medal."

PM Narendra Modi said that he was "delighted" to know of Sheuli's win and sent "best wishes to him for his future endeavours."

President Droupadi Murmu also congratulated Sheuli and said that he has made India proud.

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Sheuli, a junior world championship silver medallist, won a gold on Sunday and achieved a Commonwealth Games record of 313kg (143kg in snatch, 170kg in clean and jerk categories).

From Following in His Brother's Footsteps to Winning Gold: Sheuli's Journey

Gold medallist Sheuli hails from Deulpur town near Howrah in West Bengal. As a kid, Sheuli did not have the appearance of a weightlifter because he was very thin, Sheuli’s childhood coach Astam Das told The Indian Express.

“When I first saw Achinta, he was very thin and did not have the appearance of a weightlifter at all,” he said. “(But) one of the things that made him stand out is his hunger for the game. He does not give up easily,” Das added.

Das, a former national-level weightlifter who retired prematurely due to a back injury, used to run a makeshift gym near Sheuli's home.

Inspired by his elder brother Alok, Sheuli was 12 years old when he first entered the makeshift facility. However, his father passed away in 2013 and the financial condition of the family deteriorated, Alok told The Indian Express.

Due to the tragic incident, Alok had to drop out of college and take up the responsibility of the bread earner of the family.

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After coming fourth in Junior Nationals in 2013, Sheuli was called for trials by the Army Sports Institute in 2014. This was followed by his participation in the Youth National Games in Haryana, in which he bagged the third position.

He later joined the Indian Army, after which he received a letter from the Indian camp in 2015. Since then, Sheuli has managed to win many national and international medals, including at the Junior Youth Nationals, Junior World Championships, Junior Asian Championships, and Senior Nationals, thus paving his way to clinch the gold medal at the Commonwealth Games 2022 on Sunday.

(With inputs from PTI and The Indian Express.)

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