Asian Games 2018 is currently on its 18 edition. This time around we have a gold winner for India in the arena of sports. Moreover to say it is wrestling. The man who won gold is none other than Bajrang Punia.
Bajrang Punia won India’s first gold medal at the Asian Games in Jakarta on Sunday night. Bajrang is a 24-year-old and is making India proud. He won gold in the 65kg category. On the other hand, another wrestler, Sushil Kumar was out of the first-round who was in the 74kg category.
The way our beloved wrestler handled the pressure is commendable. People have been saying for many days now that how he and not Sushil, was a gold medal favourite. He shut himself away from media glare , preferring to concentrate on his preparation for his biggest campaign so far. But, more importantly, he had to battle self-doubt that would cloud his mind during close matches.
He was focussed and determined to beat the Japanese grappler Daichi Takatani's challenge. He was prepared and had previously watched Takatani come to the final from the lower half and knew this was a completely different and motivated wrestler to the one he had beaten in the early rounds in the World Cadet Wrestling Championships seven years ago.
Their meeting in the final of the 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat, had been a non-starter owing to Takatani’s injury. But the Japanese had got the better of him in the Asian Championship in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, earlier this year. Punia had to work very hard to not repeat the errors he had made in that 5-7 defeat.
Bajrang held his arms aloft, got a tri-colour and wrap it around his shoulders before being hoisted by a couple of team officials for a little victory lap on the mat. It was a gold he was determined to win, for himself and for his mentor Yogeshwar Dutt.
Well, we send our hearty congratulations to the wrestler who is ruling our hearts now!