Mumbai, Oct 10 (IANS) Striking gold at the Commonwealth Games was the aim of wrestler Narsingh Yadav, who underwent a right knee surgery less than two months ago, his coach said Sunday.
Yadav, who won India's 24th gold medal, defeated South African Richard Brian Addinall 4-0 Saturday in the freestyle 74 kg category.
It was his will to strike gold at the Commonwealth Games that kept him going, Singh said.
Yadav, 23, has been training under Singh since he was 13. He is a resident of suburban Jogeshwari in Mumbai.
Son of a humble milk supplier Pancham, Yadav thanked his parents and elder brother for their support.
'My father and brother were both wrestlers. Hence, it was easy for them to understand my passion towards the sport. My mother Durgavati also respected my desire,' Narsingh told IANS.
Singh said: 'Narsingh's brother also trained under me. He was a good wrestler. But now that he has a job in the Indian Railways, he has been paying less attention to the sport.'
Reminiscing about how he was brought back to the team, Yadav said he had lost in the final round of the qualification event.
'I did win various wrestling championships but had lost in the final round of the qualifying event to Sumit Kumar.
'But Sumit Kumar was disqualified along with three other wrestlers after the doping test controversy. That's when I was told to come back to the team and I happily did,' he said.
Life had given him a second chance and Yadav was wise enough to make the most of it. 'I am glad I was representing India in the CWG. I had decided to win a medal and I am glad I won gold,' he said.
Yadav, a junior ticket checker with the Indian Railways, has been given a cash prize of Rs.20 lakh by the central government.
'I have heard people say that the Maharashtra government has also declared a cash prize for Narsingh but I will have to ascertain once I go back to Mumbai,' Singh said.