Mandhir Kooner cited the raucous home crowd as inspiration after securing a battling Commonwealth bronze in the men’s freestyle 125kg wrestling.
The 25-year-old arrived at the Games in a confident mood after securing gold in the English Championships earlier this year and always looked likely to go far, defeating Sierra Leone’s Mohamed Bundu in the quarter-final on Friday morning.
And while he fell to a semi-final defeat against Pakistan’s Zaman Anwar, he put that disappointment behind him and bounced back superbly in his following match.
The Wolverhampton-born athlete faced Mauritius’ Kensley Anthony Marie and earned a victory by fall to take home his first Commonwealth medal.
He said: “I’m speechless and proud at the same time, for representing my home nation at these home games.”
Kooner was in devastating form in the bronze medal match and took just 36 seconds to defeat his opponent, with the home crowd left delighted by the manner of his victory.
Being a local athlete and competing at the Games was clearly a big source of inspiration for Kooner as he finished third on the podium.
He said: “As soon as I qualified, I thought 'I want a medal’, this is a home games, my family are here. You heard the crowd, it was crazy.
“I hope I have inspired a lot of people, especially the younger generation and those that I train with. I hope I have inspired them to train for the next Commonwealth Games as well.”
Also with a wrestling bronze medal around his neck was George Ramm who beat Nauru’s Lowe Bingham in the men’s freestyle 65kg.
But it will be his last, after he dramatically announced his retirement from the sport immediately afterwards.
He said: “That’s the best I've felt in the whole day. Before the bronze medal match, I was feeling a bit sluggish, I had heavy legs.
“I’m done now, I'm finished. I’m retired, that was the last one. I feel old. It was my aim to get a medal when I started.
"Nobody is dragging me back, 15 years since I started, it is time to stop. Hopefully, I will go into coaching.”