Asian Wrestling Championship: Sakshi Malik, Vikesh Phogat, Divya Karnan win silver medal

Ruben Hill
May 12, 2017

Rio Olympics bronze-medallist Sakshi Malik is the star attraction and spearheads the Indian challenge at the Asian Wrestling Championship.

Vinesh Phogat and Sakshi Malik are also in contention for medals. Sakshi Malik and the surprise package Divya Kakran accounted for the other silver medals.

Sakshi, who created history by becoming the first Indian wrestler to win an Olympic medal past year, could not counter the challenge from the strong Japanese grappler. She was nearly in hibernation mode for nearly a year and returned to the mat. She endured the rehabilitation till January, and had got back to competition only last month with a domestic "dangal" in Ambala, followed by the selection trials. Witnessing that, the Japanese player started counter-attacks and as a result Dosho bagged two more points to make it 6-0 in first four minutes.

India's wrestler Vinesh Phogat fights with China's Zhang Qi in the Senior WW- 55 kg category bout in the Semifinal match of the Asian Wrestling Championship 2017 at IG Stadium in New Delhi on Friday.

Making a comeback to the worldwide circuit after the Olympics, Sakshi looked a little out of touch as she went down to the Rio Games gold medallist in 63kg category Kawai 10-0 in just 2 minutes and 44 seconds.

The 24-year-old grappler, who returned to the mat after nearly a year, fended off Ayaulym Kassymova of Kazakhstan 15-3 to enter the summit showdown.

Meanwhile, Vinesh Phogat, who is rated as the next big phenomenon in the sport, has also made it to the 55kg women's wrestling final, along with Divya Kakran (69 kg).

Jyoti got a bronze medal in the 75 kg category after entering the semi-final.

Ritu had won two bouts in the morning, 11-4 against Narangerel Erdenesukh of MOngolia followed by a technical fall, 10-0 against Yeon-Jin Kim of Korea. However, she went down in the semifinal to Yui Susaki of Japan 0-9 to lose out on a place in the final.

Pinki was the only Indian wrestler to go without a medal this day, even though she also had started on a promising note when she pinned down Thi Hang Vu of Vietnam in the first round.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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