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Asian Wrestling Championships: Ravi Kumar Dahiya win gold, Bajrang Punia settles for silver


Feb 25, 2021
India’s freestyle wrestlers bagged five medals. Gourav Baliyan won a silver while Naveen and Satywart Kadian clinched a bronze each at the continental championship.

Asian Wrestling Championships: Ravi Kumar Dahiya win gold, Bajrang Punia settles for silver

Picture by 2021 Getty Images
Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar Dahiya won the gold medal while Bajrang Punia and Gourav Baliyan settled for silvers at the Asian Wrestling Championships 2022 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia on Saturday.
All five Indian freestyle wrestlers in action on the fifth day of the meet returned with medals.
Ravi Kumar Dahiya, who had clinched silver at Tokyo 2020, won his third straight Asian Championships title with a comprehensive 12-2 technical superiority win against Rakhat Kalzhan of Kazakhstan in the 57kg men’s freestyle final.
The Indian wrestler had begun his title defence with a win over Rikuto Arai of Japan and followed it up with a semi-final victory over Mongolia’s Zanabazar Zanadanbud.
Meanwhile, Tokyo Olympics bronze medallist Bajrang Punia, who was in scintillating form, went down to junior world champion Rahman Mousa Amouzadkhalili of Iran 1-3 in the men’s 65kg freestyle final.
Rahman Mousa Amouzadkhalili had come through the qualification round to defeat the top-seeded Bajrang Punia.
Bajrang Punia, a two-time Asian champion, hardly broke a sweat in his run-up to the final but struggled with his attacks in the summit clash. He had ousted Uzbekistan’s Abbos Rakhmonov and Haji Mohamad Ali of Bahrain to book his place in the final.
Later, Gourav Baliyan pocketed a silver in the 79kg, losing to Ali Bakhtiar Savadkouhi of Iran in the final.
Gourav was down 0-8 in the final but produced a terrific comeback to make it 9-9 right at the end of the bout. But a bigger scoring move (four-pointer) from the Iranian meant the Indian grappler had to make do with the silver medal.
It is Gourav Baliyan’s second silver medal at the Asian Championships after finishing runner-up in 2020 as well.
Meanwhile, men’s 70kg freestyle wrestler Naveen pinned Temuulen Enkhtuya of Mongolia to add another bronze to India’s tally. The Indian had lost in the quarter-finals but fought for third place through the repechage rules.
Satywart Kadian picked the final medal of the day for India, winning the 97kg men’s freestyle bronze.
The heavyweight Indian wrestler defeated Zyyamuhammet Saparov of Turkmenistan by technical superiority to win his fourth bronze medal at the continental competition.
After the successful day, India’s medal tally at the Asian Wrestling Championships 2022 has risen to 15 medals – one gold, four silvers and 10 bronze.
Next up, world silver medallist Deepak Punia will be in action on Sunday, which is the last day of the meet.

Good to see India finally in first place in Men's Freestyle. Since 2019, India has always been in 2nd place behind Iran for 3 consecutive years but finally we get the first place in this category. In women's freestyle, our performance has gone a little down as compared to the past 3 years.


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