New Delhi, Oct 22: India's star wrestler Bajrang Punia's hopes of winning a gold medal at World Wrestling Championships were dashed as the 24-year-old lost in the final to Japan's Takuto Otoguro in the 65kg Freestyle final to settle for a silver in Budapest, Hungary on Monday (October 22).
Punia lost to his 19-year-old opponent 9-16 in the final and India's hopes of winning their second gold at the Wrestling Worlds still remained a dream.
Punia was down 0-5 in no time after the start of the opening bout but staged a comeback to trail the by 6-7 at the end. The Japanese teen, however, came back strongly in the second bout and stunned the Indian and clinch the gold quite comfortably.
India's star wrestler #BajrangPunia settles for silver after losing in men's freestyle 65 kg to Japan's #TakutoOtoguro 16-9 in the final of Senior World Wrestling Championships in Budapest, Hungary #BudaWrestle2018 #Budapest2018 pic.twitter.com/jea2il8JvN— Doordarshan News (@DDNewsLive) October 22, 2018
Punia, who won a bronze medal in the 2013 edition of the tournament, improved the colour of his medal this time but to his dismay couldn't finish at the top of the podium.
The wrestler dedicated his silver medal to the victims of the Amritsar train accident.
"I want to dedicate this silver medal at World Wrestling Championships to the people died in the tragic Amritsar train accident. My deep condolences to their families," tweeted Punia.
Sushil Kumar has bagged India's only gold at Wrestling Worlds, way back in 2010 in Moscow.
I want to dedicate this silver medal at World Wrestling Championships to the people died in the tragic Amritsar train accident. My deep condolences to their families. pic.twitter.com/oSsg3ABA2c— Bajrang Punia (@BajrangPunia) October 22, 2018
Earlier on Sunday, the Indian had quelled a spirited challenge from Alejandro Enrique in a tense semi-final.
The Commonwealth Games and Asian Games 2018 gold medallist had dominated in the quadrennial events earlier this year but his road to the final in Budapest wasn't easy as he had to use all his mental and physical prowess to down his Cuban opponent (4-3) in the semifinal after overcoming Mongolia's Tulga Tumur Ochir (5-3) win in the quarter-finals.