They say winning gold medals needs immense hard-work. Well sometimes it is just not true, as double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar has just strolled to National Wrestling Gold Medal without breaking a sweat – quite literally. Kumar neither fought in quarters, nor in semi-finale and not in finale either and yet bagged a national gold.
On Friday, Sushil Kumar was declared as the winner of 74kg category National Wrestling Championship in Indore – after three back-to-back walkovers! Yep, he didn’t fight any matches, he didn’t fight for the gold medal and he still scored national gold. Sushil Kumar had returned the game after three years, and quiet shockingly – during the quarterfinal and semi-final matches, Sushil’s opponents came to the mat, touched his feet and then he was declared the winner. Yep, the just gave a walkover – which is actually legal in freestyle wrestling as long as the one who passes off is able to give a legitimate reason for the walkover.
Sushil Kumar’s quarterfinal opponent was Parveen, who was representing Haryana’s B team and his semifinal rival was Sachin Rathi of Uttar Pradesh. In the finale, opponent Rana – who was sent to Rio Olympics 2016 too gave a walkover to Kumar citing a thigh injury. Once any player gives a walkover, with a legitimate reason, the technical judge committee decides whether it is valid or not. In this case, the technical committee for the championship must have found the reasons given by the three wrestlers as legitimate.
And that is how Sushil Kumar won the gold medal at three-day-long event of 62nd Senior National Wrestling Championship, organised by the Madhya Pradesh Wrestling Association. Meanwhile, India’s single woman Olympic medal winner Sakshi Malik and wrestler Geeta Phogat also achieved a gold medal each 62kg and 59 kg categories respectively of women’s wrestling on the second day of the competition.