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May 17, 2010

Ravinder Singh Wins Bronze on Final Day of Asian Wrestling

NEW DELHI: Ravinder Singh won a bronze medal in the 60kg category on the final day as India finished the Senior Asian Wrestling Championship with impressive tally of seven medals, including two gold on Sunday.

Ravinder, the three-time Commonwealth Championship gold medallist, beat Beishalev Azis of Kyrgyzstan 3-1, 0-1, 3-0 and helped India held its third position in the Greco Roman team championship.

Sanjay and Ashok Kumar lost out on bronze medal matches in the 74kg and 96kg categories respectively.

India were level on points with China but the hosts were pushed to third position since China had a gold medal in the 60 kilogram category. Korea topped the team championship in this category with four gold medals.

Thirty-year-old Sanjay has been a seven-time National gold medalist and won silver medal at the 2005 and 2008 Commonwealth Championships.

Ashok, on the other hand, has silver and gold medals to his name in the 2007 and 2009 Commonwealth Championships respectively and is also the current national champion.

In the overall team championship in Freestyle Wrestling, India stood fifth while Iran topped the table.

India were placed fifth in Female Wrestling as well, with China grabbing the top spot and Japan finishing second. Following are the medal winners of India:

Ravinder Kumar said the bronze medal win in a tough competition like this has done a world of good to his confidence.

"I had a tough draw to start with. I was fighting the 2006 Asian Games gold medalist Sheng Jiang (eventual champion) in the second round itself, who I lost to at the same stage in Doha. I had three tough bouts but I still gave it all in the bronze medal bout.

"Standard of Asian wrestling is of the same level as Olympics. We have the World Championship in Moscow in September, the Commonwealth Games in October and the Asian Games in November, and I am confident of winning gold in these tournaments," he said.

Sanjay was cheerful despite defeat and was hopeful of putting up a good show in the Commonwealth Games.

"I just had a bad day. I don't think Indian wrestlers are behind as compared to the Iranians or the Chinese. We are continuously trying to improve our skills to be able to do well in the Commonwealth Games," he said.

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