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CWG mascots - Good Luck Charms

Larger than life and cuddly, Mascots add a lighter element to the competitions. They not only paint a pretty picture but present the attitude and temperament of the Games. Raisa Daimary writes.

delhi Updated: Sep 20, 2010 11:55 IST
Raisa Daimary

Larger than life and cuddly, Mascots add a lighter element to the competitions. They not only paint a pretty picture but present the attitude and temperament of the Games. The first mascot to appear was in the year 1978. Ever since, the mascot has been an important part of the Commonwealth Games. They represent the host country their outlook towards the Games.

1978: XI Commonwealth Games - Edmonton Canada


The 1978 Commonwealth Games mascot was a Swan Hills Grizzly Bear native to Alberta named "Keyano", a Cree Indian word which means oneness and fraternity. The Grizzly bear is found only in the densely forested Swan Hills of North Alberta which is probably why it was picked as the Mascot for Edmonton Canada. The Grizzlies are one of North America's largest bears and though they have a fierce reputation, they are facing extinction as their numbers have declined due to destruction of their habitat.

1982: XII Commonwealth Games - Brisbane, Australia (30 Sep - 9 Oct)


"Matilda" was the 1982 Commonwealth Games mascot. She was represented by a cartoon kangaroo and a giant, 13-metre (42 feet 8 inches) tall mechanical kangaroo, who traveled around the stadium. She even winked at the crowd. And why shouldn't a kangaroo be the mascot when it is the national animal of Australia and since Matilda was uniquely Australian she did very well commercially for the Games.

1986: XIII Commonwealth Games - Edinburgh, Scotland (24 July - 2 August)


The 1986 Commonwealth Games mascot "Scottie" was a black dog called "Mac".

The Scottish Terrier are typical to the highlands of Scotland where they are bred. They are a small breed of feisty Terrier usually black with a distinctive shape. They have been owned by a variety of celebrities, including the 43rd President of the United States George W. Bush

1990: XIV Commonwealth Games - Auckland, New Zealand (24 Jan - 3 Feb)


In the 1990 Commonwealth Games, a Kiwi Bird called "Goldie" was chosen as the mascot. The Kiwi Bird served as the mascot for both the Olympic as well as the Commonwealth Games teams. This national Symbol of New Zealand, the Kiwi, is sadly now an endangered species because of deforestation and destruction of its habitat.

1994: XV Commonwealth Games - Victoria, Canada (18 - 28 August)


The 1994 Commonwealth Games mascot was "Klee Wych", the Killer Whale. Although one would not really think fit to put the words "killer whale" and "friendly" together in a single sentence, the mascot symbolized fun and festivities. Killer Whales are graceful, intelligent and sociable animals native to Canadian waters.
The name Klee Wych is broadly translated as "the laughing one" in the native-American language of the Nuu-chah Nulth people.

1998: XVI Commonwealth Games - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (11 - 21 September)


The 1998 Commonwealth Games' official mascot was an Orang Utan called "Wira". The world's second largest primate, the orangutans are found on the island of Borneo in the Malaysian states of Sarawak and Sabah.

These extremely strong but gentle and shy creatures are known to make their home on tree tops and are the only known primate species that make and sleep on its own bed of twigs and small branches. The word Wira means warrior in Habasa Malaysia. Wira projected the friendly personality and the warm nature the people of Malaysia.
2002: XVII Commonwealth Games - Manchester, England (25 July - 4 August)


In 2002, the official mascot of the Commonwealth Games was KIT. The mascot was part cat and part lion. Supposedly street smart, the "Kool Cat" was first revealed in the 2002 Commonwealth Games. KIT is known to be friendly though mischievous, dynamic, fun and vibrant. 2006: XVIII Commonwealth Games - Melbourne, Australia (15 - 26 March)

The Official Mascot for the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games was a south-eastern Australian Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, an Australian native bird named "Karak". The species is characterized by playful, friendly, cheeky, loud and energetic demeanor.

The south-eastern Australian Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, scientifically known as calyptorhynchus banksii graptogyne is on the endangered list with fewer than 1,000 remaining. "Karak" - is named so after his distinctive birdcall. Uniquely Australian he is gregarious and handsome and embodies the spirit of the Games.

Shera - The Mascot

The 2010 Commonwealth Games mascot is Shera. The name comes from word which means tiger in Hindi. The Tiger is the national animal of India and is an endangered species today as it faces indiscriminate poaching and the destruction of its habitat.

Shera the tiger exudes majesty, power, charisma, intelligence and grace and commands athletic skills, courage and speed.

He is adorable, ever-smiling, cheerful and he encourages everyone to 'come out and play' which is 2010 Commonwealth Games motto inspiring everyone to give in to the spirit of celebration of sportsmanship.