New Delhi, Feb 18: India's Sunil Kumar reached the final of the 87kg category with a brilliant come-from-behind victory over Azamat Kustubayev at the Asian Wrestling Championships here on Tuesday (February 18).
Kumar was down 1-8 in his semi-final bout against his Kazakh opponent but made a great comeback, winning 11 points on the trot to finish the bout at 12-8.
In 2019 also, Kumar had made it to the final and ended with a silver medal. In the 87kg final, Rome Ranking Series silver medallist Sunil will play against Azat Salidinov from Kyrgyzstan.
Earlier in the day, Arjun Halakurki (55kg) lost his semi-final bout from a winning position. He lost 7-8 against Iran's Pouya Mohammad Naserpour. Arjun will now be up against Korea's Donghyeok Won in the bronze medal playoff.
Mehar Singh also lost his last-four bout. Up against Minseok Kim of Korea, Mehar went down tamely to the Korean by a 1-9 margin. Mehar had made the Indian team at the last minute. Just three days before the tournament, India's number one in 130 kg, Naveen, pulled out of the event due to injury.
Mehar replaced Naveen and won his opening bout against Daler Rakhmatov of Uzbekistan. In the first qualification bout of the day, Sajan, who was one of India's big medal hopes lost in a disappointing manner.
He was pitted against under-23 Asian champion Renat Iliazuulu of Kyrgyzstan in the first round. The Indian wrestler could not match the initial onslaught of Iliazuulu and lost 6-9. Sachin Rana (63kg) faced a massive defeat against Elmurat Tasmuradov by a margin of 8-0. He was then pitted against Yernur Fidakhmetov of Kazakhstan where he could not put up much of a challenge and went down 6-3 in his Repechage bout.
Results (For all Indians on Day 1)
55kg Quarterfinals - Arjun Halakurki (India) defeats Tuorki Ali (KSA) 10-2
Semi-finals - Arjun Halakurki (India) lost to Pouya Mohammad (Iran) 7-8 63kg
Last 16 - Sachin Rana (India) beat Tynar SHARSHENBEKOV (KGZ) 6-0
Last 8 - Sachin Rana (India) lost to Elmurat Tasmuradov (UZB) 0-8 77Kg
Last 16 - Sajan (India) lost to Renat Iliazuulu (KGZ) 6-9 87Kg
Last 8 - Sunil Kumar (India) beat Takahiro Tsuruda (Japan) 8-2
Semis - Sunil Kumar (India) beat Azamat Kustubayev (KAZ) 12-8 130Kg
Last 8 - Mehar Singh (India) beat DALER RAKHMATOV (Uzbekistan) 4-0
Semis - Mehar Singh (India) lost to Minseok Kim (Korea) 9-1.