Sunil Kumar had a wonderful outing at the Asian Wrestling Championships. He won Gold in 87kg Greco Roman to end India’s 27-year drought for a Greco Roman gold in continental competition. Pappu Yadav (48kg) was the last Indian wrestler to win a Greco-Roman gold in 1993 Asian Championships.
Sunil has also raked other benefits from the first position finish. He climbed 12 places to the fourth in the UWW World Rankings with 32 points. This higher ranking will play an important role at the Olympic seeding and help him avoid tough opponents if he makes it to the Tokyo 2020 Games.
Sunil is now focussing on the Asian Olympic Qualifiers which have been rescheduled to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, in March as due to Coronavirus outbreak like many other events has forced the relocation of the competition.
Ashu, the 67kg Greco Roman wrestler also improved his ranking after bronze medal finish. He is now placed seventh with a jump of 19 ranks.
In women’s wrestling, Anshu and Divya Kakran has moved up in the list with gold medal finishes. They are ranked seventh and sixth in 57kg and 86kg category respectively. Vinesh Phogat has fallen a place lower now after her bronze medal finish at Asian Wrestling Championship. She has now moved to the third spot, losing her second position to Japan’s Mayu Mukaida.
The freestyle wrestling has also seen a change in the rankings. World Championship medalist Rahul Aware and Tokyo-bound Deepak Punia have climbed to the second spot in 61kg and 86kg category respectively.