Double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar and Rahul Aware claimed contrasting gold medals in 74 kg and 53 kg categories respectively. On the other hand, defending champion Babita Phogat settled for a silver on the first day of wrestling competition.
It took Sushil one-minute-and-twenty seconds to defeat South Africa’s Johannes Botha on technical superiority to claim his third successive gold medal at the CWG.
Meanwhile, Rahul Aware won clinch match by 15-7 over Canada’s Steven Takahashi in an exciting contest. In the match, he was troubled by groin niggle but decides to continue the match with just few time left on the clock.
On winning the gold, Rahul said, ‘’I have been waiting for this medal for the last 10 years. I can’t describe how it feels to claim it. I missed out on 2010, even in 2014, the team was sent without trials. So, I am very happy that I could finally fulfil this dream’’.
“I dedicate this to my guru who passed away in 2012, I am happy that all the efforts I put in got the result I wanted’’, he added.
However, Babita Kumari Phogat has to settle for silver after being outmanoeuvred by Canada’s Diana Weicker in the summit clash.
She won a silver in the 2010 Commonwealth Games and then went on to clinch gold at the Glasgow.
After the match, she said, “I think my weakness today was my attack. I should have been more aggressive, but I gave my 100 per cent. I am satisfied with the intensity I put in but obviously I could not get the result I wanted’’.
“I had a bit of a problem in my knees too but injuries are a wrestler’s ornaments. We live with niggles, there is nothing there’’, she added.
While Babita’s bout lacked spark, Aware’s showdown with Takahashi was thoroughly engaging. The Indian trailed 6-7 at one stage but claimed points on takedown to recover and keep imself ahead.