WFI in a dilemma over Sushil Kumar’s selection trial

first_imgThe preparatory camp for the wrestling world championships is going on at full throttle and double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar is gearing up for a return to the mat in the 74kg category.The world championships, to be held in Las Vegas from September 7-12, will also double up as a qualification tournament for the 2016 Rio Olympics. With Narsingh Yadav also competing in the 74kg category, the Wrestling Federation of India is facing a dilemma on whether to hold selection trials which will pit the two against each other.Sushil’s last competition was the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow where he won gold, competing in the 74kg for the first time.Since then, the London Olympics silver medallist decided to focus only on the Rio Olympics. Narsingh, who competed at the London Olympics in the 74kg class, replaced Sushil and performed well, winning bronze medals at the Asian Games and the recent Asian Championships.Coaches at the national camp said Sushil, 32, is preparing in all earnest for the world championship but a call on the selection trials will be taken by WFI.”Sushil is preparing for any possibility. Narsingh has done well in recent tournaments. Every player should get an equal opportunity. But there are four Olympic qualification events and the world championship is the first one. The WFI will decide on it,” one of the coaches told Mail Today.The worlds, however, will provide the largest number of qualification berths. The top six wrestlers in each of the 18 Olympic weight categories will make the cut.advertisementWFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh said they are going to meet the coaches and selectors in the next few days to decide on the matter.”We have never exempted anyone from trials. Yes, in the past we have relieved senior players from nationals and trials considering their performances, experience and workload,” he told Mail Today.When the WFI decided not to hold selection trials for the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, paving the way for Sushil and Yogeshwar to return to the mat after two years with a direct qualification, some wrestlers moved court against the federation.However, both Sushil and Yogeshwar justified WFI’s decision by winning gold medals in their first international competition after the change in weight classes. Yogeshwar competed in the 65kg category while Sushil, who earlier fought in 66kg, participated in 74kg.Also, there is a new set of coaches and assistant coach Jagmal Singh has served as the personal coach of Narsingh. He is likely to argue in favour of trials.last_img

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