Spirit of movement 'well and truly alive'
Organisers hail the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, saying event will continue to endure
The Commonwealth Games in Glasgow were hailed on Sunday as a "stand-out" event by organisers who insisted the movement, comprising largely former British colonies, was well and truly alive.
A combination of the high quality of sports on show, a well-defined legacy plan, the home nation's success, top-class venues, and friendly reception offered by 15,000 volunteers and the city's residents helped make the Games a success, said Mike Hooper, CEO of the Commonwealth Games Federation.
"These have been great Games and in my view the stand-out Games in the history of the movement," said Hooper.
Bringing together more than 4,000 athletes from 71 nations, including 53 former British colonies - the rest mainly territories or dependencies, in 17 sports, the Commonwealth movement remained strong with high expectations for the next Games in Australia's Gold Coast in 2018, he added.
"The spirit of these Games has continued to endure."
The federation, Hooper said, was "delighted with the Glasgow Games and they're all very excited about the future of the movement going forward to Gold Coast and beyond".
Welshman Geraint Thomas overcame the drama of a late puncture in treacherous conditions to win the men's cycling road race on the final day.
He came to a standstill with six kilometres left of the 168-km slog through continual rain and had to wait what seemed an age to have a new wheel fitted, but kept his composure and had enough time in hand on pursuers Jack Bauer of New Zealand, who claimed silver, and England's Scott Thwaites to take the title.
"To be honest, I felt terrible at the start," Thomas told the BBC. "I was thinking of just stopping. But then everyone else seemed to come down to my level."
England's Lizzie Armitstead won the women's 98-km road race, finishing ahead of compatriot Emma Pooley with South Africa's Ashleigh Pasio third.
"This is something I have always dreamed about; it means so much to me. I was always a runner-up," Armitstead said.
Australia beat India 4-0 to win their fifth consecutive men's hockey gold. England beat New Zealand 4-2 in a penalty shoot-out to take the bronze medal after the teams were level 3-3 after regulation time ended.
In netball, Australia easily beat arch rivals New Zealand 58-40 for the gold medal.
Michelle Li became the first Canadian to win women's singles gold in Games badminton as she saw off the challenge of Scotland's Kirsty Gilmour and her passionate home following at the Emirates Arena.
India's Kashyap Parupalli was a popular winner in the men's singles final, beating Derek Wong of Singapore.
Agence France-Presse, Reuters, Associated Press