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Nov 24, 2011

Massive turn out for Indo-Pak wrestling tie

LAHORE: A massive crowd on Monday turned up for the India-Pakistan wrestling competition at the Punjab stadium, where India's Sutander Singh defeated local favourite Shahid Khoyawala amidst big roars and cheering.

Though the jam-packed stadium was clearly disappointed to see the Indian prevailing over Shahid in the main bout of the day, but the crowd displayed great sportsmanship by cheering the Indian grappler for his victory.

All the leading television channels broadcast the wrestling bout live. The son of Punjab chief minister, Shahbaz Sharif, Hamza Shahbaz was also in attendance to witness the bout. Sutander, who had also won his bout in Gujranwala two days back, was again in prime form as he took little time to counter attack and pin Shahid on the floor.

"This is sports one has to lose and one has to win and today he was fortunate. I slipped while trying a technical hold on him and he took full advantage of my fall and pinned me," Shahid, who had claimed he would floor the Indian in 10 minutes time, said. Shahid said he had prepared hard for the bout but it was not to be his day. Sutander said he was elated to win the bout and deeply touched by the warm welcome he was given by everyone.

The second Indian wrestler, Jagroop Singh did not take part in the bout because of a injury. The third phase of the Indo-Pak wrestling competition is scheduled to be held in Faisalabad later this week. Hamza told reporters after the bout that the big turnout for the matches showed how much people wanted to see the sporting contests between the two neighbouring nations. "The more we have such sporting contests the more it will help in bringing people closer to each other and sorting out our issues," he said.

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