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Wrestling World C’ships: Vinesh Phogat makes it to the repechage round, likely to get shot at Bronze


BELGRADE: Commonwealth gold medalist Vinesh Phogat advanced to the repechage round of the ongoing World Wrestling Championships 2022 in Belgrade, Serbia on Tuesday.

Vinesh Phogat, a 2019 world championships bronze medalist, was handed a shocking 7-0 defeat by 2022 Asian championships silver medalist Khulan Batkhuyag of Mongolia in the qualification round.

The Indian wrestler trailed Batkhuyag 3-0 at the end of the opening round and conceded another four points in the final moments to lose the bout.

Khulan Batkhuyag stormed through to the final by winning her next matches giving Vinesh Phogat a likely shot at the bronze medal.

Vinesh Phogat will now take on 2018 Asian Games silver medallist Zhuldyz Eshimova of Kazakhstan in the repechage on Wednesday.

The other four Indian women competing on the day, meanwhile, failed to progress further.

Sushma Shokeen, who won bronze at the Asian Championships in April, lost to Moldova’s Mariana Dragutan in the repechage round in the women’s 55kg.

Sushma Shokeen defeated Pan-American champion Yaynelis Sanz Verdecia of Cuba on Monday before losing to the last edition’s bronze medalist Oleksandra Khomenets of Ukraine despite leading at one stage.

Sushma Shokeen once again had the upper hand in the repechage round and led Mariana Dragutan 8-2 at the end of round one. However, Dragutan, the reigning Under-23 European champion, inflicted a fall on the Indian in round two to seal the victory.

Neelam, competing in the 50kg, was the only Indian to register a win on Tuesday. The Under-23 Asian silver medallist Indian beat Szimonetta Timea Szeker 4-2 to qualify for the main draw.

Neelam then lost to two-time world championships silver medallist Emilia Alina Vuc of Romania 10-0 via technical superiority.

Shefali (65kg) lost to two-time world championships medallist Koumba Selene Fanta Larroque of France 10-0 via technical superiority in the qualifiers.

Priyanka, who won silver at the under-20 world championships last month, went down to three-time Pan-American silver medallist Genesis Rosangela Reasco Valdezin of Ecuador via technical superiority in the qualifying round of 76kg.

Apart from Vinesh Phogat, the last edition’s bronze medallist Sarita Mor (57kg), Mansi Ahlawat (59kg), Nisha Dahiya (68kg) and (72kg) will be in action on Sept 14.

India is yet to win a medal at the world wrestling championships 2022.

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