Source: www.insidethegames.bizBy Tom Degun in New Delhi

Glasgow 2014 steals the show as curtain falls on Delhi Commonwealth GamesOctober 14 - New Delhi put on a Closing Ceremony of epic proportions here at a sell-out 60,000-seat Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium as the 19th Commonwealth Games ended in spectacular fashion - although it was perhaps an eight-minute segment from the next Commonwealth Games hosts Glasgow that stole the show.

The Glasgow 2014 offering, which combined elements of traditional Scottish heritage, the beauty of rural Scottish life and the more modern, urban and dynamic cityscape in Glasgow, bought the rapturous crowd to their feet, such was popularity of the innovative display.

The modern take on a proud Scottish heritage was highly visible in the form of tartan, kilts, bagpipes and the Loch Ness monster, all of whom made an appearance in the mass-choreographed piece.

Iconic architecture of Glasgow was the centrepiece to the performance, in the form of a 30 metre long replica of one of Glasgow's famous buildings, the Clyde Auditorium, which is known by most as the "Armadillo".

The cast from every corner of Scotland, and from a variety of backgrounds and professions, will be given the opportunity to become formal Ambassadors for Glasgow 2014 in a night all 352 performers are sure to remember for the rest of their lives.

It was Prince Charles who had opened the 11-day competition in the Indian capital but it was actually Prince Edward, The Earl of Wessex and vice-patron of the Commonwealth Games Federation, who drew proceedings to a close.

In the last major act of what had been a display full of bright colours and Bollywood vibrancy, Edward said: "On behalf of Her Majesty the Queen, Patron of the Commonwealth Games, and in the name of the Commonwealth Games Federation, I proclaim the XIX Commonwealth Games Delhi 2010 closed and in accordance with tradition I call upon sportsmen and sportswomen of the Commonwealth to assemble in four years' time in Glasgow, Scotland, there to celebrate the XX Commonwealth Games."

The Closing Ceremony got under way with Prince Edward, Commonwealth Games Federation president Michael Fennell, Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan and Indian Vice President Shri M Hamid Ansari - as well as other dignitaries - taking their seats in the VIP box for the Indian National Anthem.

What followed was an amazing display of pyrotechnics and hypnotic cultural India dances about The Glory of Sports - featuring a martial arts display - Military Marshall Music, A Tribute to the Motherland and the Parade of Athletes.

The Parade of Athletes saw all 71 competing nations take to the arena together and receive a generous applause but a deafening reception was reserved for India as the hosts emerged.

India were in a particularly good mood as they held off England - claiming 38 gold medals to England's 37 - to secure their best ever finish of second on the final medal table behind victors Australia.

Following the Parade of the Athletes, golden moments from the Games were played on to the crowd and mascot Shera the tiger waved an emotional goodbye to the spectators.

It was then that dignitaries came to the stage in the form of Fennell, Delhi 2010 Organising Committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi, Delhi chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, Delhi Governor Tejinder Khanna, The Lord Provost of Glasgow Robert Winter and Glasgow 2014 Organising Committee chairman Lord Smith of Kelvin.

Kalmadi made a speech thanking Delhi and the athletes for making the event a success, hailing a "new era for Indian sport" following their record haul of 101 medals.

Kalmadi, who received a hostile reception in the Opening Ceremony, was again booed by large sections of the audience during his speech.


Glasgow 2014 steals the show as curtain falls on Delhi Commonwealth GamesThe controversial Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games chairman, blamed by many for the problems that plagued the build-up to the events, said that India had overcome a series of concerns to host the Games and should be proud of their achievement.

Next came the Commonwealth Games Federation Flag Handover Ceremony as Dikshit said to The Lord Provost of Glasgow: "In a few moments the Commonwealth Games Federation Ceremonial Flag will be entrusted in your care so that in due time you deliver it to Glasgow, the host city of the XX Commonwealth Games to be held in 2014."

The Lord Provost of Glasgow responded: "This duty I willingly undertake to fulfil."

The flag was ceremoniously folded and handed from Kalmadi to Khanna, to The Lord Provost of Glasgow and finally to Lord Smith of Kelvin.

Then Lord Smith of Kelvin praised Delhi and invited the Commonwealth to come to Glasgow for the 2014 Games before the city performed their show-stealing eight-minute segment highlighting the beauty of Glasgow.

Following the spectacular Glasgow segment, Fennell made his own speech hailing the event as a success and thanking Delhi before naming the winner of the prestigious David Dixon Award which goes to the outstanding performer of the Commonwealth Games.

The popular Trecia Smith of Jamaica, who claimed gold in the women's triple jump event with a leap of 14.19m, was the winner.

Fennell then invited Prince Edward to the stage and The Earl of Wessex officially declared the XIX Commonwealth Games closed before a futuristic laser show started, more spectacular fireworks were let off, more blaring music was played and Delhi was left to party well in to the night.


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