Indians shine at Asian junior wrestling

Taichung (Taiwan): Indian wrestlers produced a superb show to bag five medals at the Junior Asian Championships here on Friday.

Among the women, Pooja Gehlot won gold in the 51kg category while Sonu clinched a silver medal in the 44kg event. Manju Kumari got a bronze in the women’s 59kg division.

The boys bagged two medals in the Greco-Roman categories on the second day of the competition with S. Satish clinching silver in the 120kg division while Manish got a bronze in the 50kg category.

The Indian boys have now registered a tally of one silver and six bronze medals over the two days of the Greco-Roman competition.

This is the best performance by Indian boys in the Greco-Roman style as they have finished on the podium in every weight category except for the 60kg division.

In the women’s 51kg category, Pooja scripted an exciting 6-5 win over Chisaki Hori of Japan in the final.

The duo entertained the crowd with a flurry of attacks and crafty defence. Hori had taken the lead early in the first period by taking two points with a takedown.

Hori’s lead did not last long as Pooja took four points with a couple of takedowns. But the Japanese fought back to level the scores just before the break.

Pooja regained the upperhand with a two-point takedown midway through the second period for a 6-4 lead.

Although Hori cut the lead down to a single point, Pooja held on in the in the closing stages of the bout to clinch a narrow victory.

Pooja had started her campaign in rousing fashion by outclassing Thi Dao Bui of Vietnam by technical superiority in the qualification round.

She then edged out Liao Xuejiao of China before thrashing Chiu Jo-Cih of Taiwan by an 11-2 margin in the semi-finals.

Sonu on the other hand, was not match for China’s Chen Yumei in the women’s 44 kg final as she went down by a 4-14 margin.

The Indian had taken an early lead with a four-point takedown. But she could do little thereafter as Chen produced a takedown of her own before coming up with three gut wrenches to take a 10-4 lead going into the break.

Among the boys, Satish ran into a tough challenge in the form of Hossein Amirmohammad HajipourGanji of Iran in the 120kg final. Satish gave a tough fight before going down by a 3-6 margin.

The Indian enjoyed the physical advantage as he towered over the relatively smaller Iranian. Throughout the bout, Satish aimed to dominate his opponent with his superior strength, but Hossein made good use of his superior technique to script a decisive victory.

The final team scores for Greco-Roman were Iran 71, Kazakhstan 58 and India 55.