Three Indian wrestlers Rio Olympic bronze medalist Sakshi Malik, Vinesh Phogat and Divya Kakran qualified into the final round of their respective weight categories with an easy win in the Asian Wrestling Championships on Friday.
In the year 2016, Sakshi won the bronze medal in the Rio Olympics. She was almost in hibernation mode for almost a year and returned to the mat. Last week, she defeated the national champion Manju Kumari 10-0 during the selection trials for the Asian Championships. She was supposed to fight in the 58kg category. But during the tournament, it was noted that she was overweight for 58kg and hence for the first time she performed in the 60kg category. And that wasn’t tad bit hard for her. The 24-year-old wrestler got hold of Nabira Esenbaeva of Uzbekistan 6-2 in the quarter-final and then smacked Ayaulym Kassymova 15-3 in her semi-final to make a cake-walk into the finals.
Even Vinesh (women’s 55kg) didn’t struggle to defeated Sevara Eshmuratova of Uzbekistan 10-0 in the quarter-finals before thrashing China’s Qi Zhang 4-0 in semi-finals.
Divya Kakran made to the finals of women’s 69kg category. She defeated Chen-Chi Huang of Taipei 2-0 by fall verdict and then outplayed Hyeonyeong Park of Korea 12-4 in the semifinal. Divya Kakran is the new kid on the blog so it was quite impressive of her.
Whereas, Ritu Phogat playing in the 48kg lost in the semi-finals to Yui Susaki of Japan 0-9, but then she will be fighting for the bronze medal.
However, Pinki was the only Indian wrestler in the 53kg to lose in the quarterfinal round.