Gold Coast, Australia: Indian wrestlers finished their campaign in CWG 2018 with two gold and two bronze medals on Saturday. Vinesh Phogat and Sumit Malik won the gold medals in the women’s 50kg and men’s 125kg while Sakshi Malik won the bronze medal in women’s 62kg. The other bronze medallist was Somveer who won the medal in 86kg.
India won a medal in each category and finished at the top of the medals tally in wrestling. With five gold, three silver and four bronze, India took the first place amongst Commonwealth Games nations.
The overall count was one less than the medals achieved in the 2014 edition of the Games but India kept their gold medal count at five, the number they achieved the last time.
The weight categories of both Sakshi and Vinesh competed in a round-robin format as the number of competitors in the draw was less than six.
Sakshi went out of the gold medal contention in the first round itself after losses to Canada’s Michelle Fazzari and Nigeria’s Aminat Adeniyi following a win over Cameroon’s Berthe Ngolle.
But she gathered herself after the setback to defeat New Zealand’s Tayla Ford 6-5 in a close bout to avoid going without a medal. The heartbreak of missing the gold left her in tears during the medal ceremony.
However, Vinesh continued her tremendous comeback to big-ticket wrestling. The 23-year-old, who had sustained a career-threatening injury during the Rio Olympics, was in complete control of proceedings from her first bout.
She ultimately did what her cousin Babita could not do and claimed a second successive gold medal at the Games. The Indian won two of her three bouts on technical superiority, raising to 10-point leads before her rivals could open their accounts.
Sumit, on the other hand, competed in three bouts but didn’t have to fight it out in the gold medal bout after his Nigerian rival Sinivie Boltic pulled out citing an injury sustained earlier in the day.
Later, in the last India bout of the day, Somveer ensured that it ended on a bright note as he clinched the 86kg category bronze.
Somveer rallied from a 1-3 deficit to defeat Canadian Alexander Moore in the playoff bout.
Earlier, double Olympic-medallist Sushil Kumar, Rahul Aware and Bajrang Punia had picked up gold medals for India on the first two days of the competition.