A Ronaldo and a Beckham in India's Commonwealth Games 2022 squad

Jul 26, 2022 03:27 PM IST

India will be aiming to win a medal in cycling at the upcoming Commonwealth Games 2022 in Birmingham and will have two cyclists, sharing names with Cristiano Ronaldo and David Beckham, representing them.

At the upcoming Commonwealth Games 2022 (CWG 2022) in Birmingham, India will have their own Cristiano Ronaldo and David Beckham gunning for glory. Well, we are not talking about the football superstars but Indian cyclists Ronaldo Laitonjam Singh and David Beckham. Two of India's star cyclists, the duo will be hoping to win the country's first medal in the sport at CWG 2022, starting from July 28.

Ronaldo Singh in action for Team India.(Instagram/@ronaldo_laitofficial)
Ronaldo Singh in action for Team India.(Instagram/@ronaldo_laitofficial)

Born on June 22, 2002, Ronaldo Singh is from Manipur and interestingly wasn't named after Cristiano Ronaldo or Ronaldo de Lima, but was named after Ronaldinho Gaucho. Brazil legend Ronaldinho's real name is Ronaldo de Assis Moreira. Ronaldo's father Roben Singh was a CRPF jawan in 2002 and was watching Brazil's 2002 FIFA World Cup quarter-final match against England, in Kashmir's Srinagar. Ronaldinho hogged the limelight in that game with a stunning free-kick and it is said just as the ball hit the net, Roben found out that his wife was going into labour in his hometown.

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"Just as the ball went in the goal, I must have started making an appearance," Ronaldo Singh said, in an interview with the Hindu.

"I think my dad won some money that day. That's probably why I got that name. He felt I was very lucky for him."

Discovering cycling at the age of 14, Ronaldo won gold in the men's team sprint at the 2019 World Junior Cycling Championships in Germany. It also marked India's first-ever gold medal at the cycling worlds, junior or senior. He also performed at individual level, winning at the Asian Track Cycing Championship in 2019 and also becoming junior world no. 1 in that year. In 2022, he once again grabbed headlines as he became the first Indian senior cyclist to win an individual silver medal at the Asian Track Cycling Championships, in New Delhi.

Meanwhile, David Beckham hails from Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and became famous after winning multiple gold medals in the under-17 category at the Khelo India Games 2020. A year younger than Ronaldo, he took up the sport in 2017. He won his first international medals in 2021 and was also part of the Indian sprint squad with Ronaldo, which secured bronze at the Asian Track Cycling Championships 2022. Beckham is from a family, who support Manchester United and was named after former England captain David Beckham.

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