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Home News Top Indian wrestlers gear up for Rome Ranking Series

Top Indian wrestlers gear up for Rome Ranking Series

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The four-day tournament will see seven defending world champions and at least 30 world medal holders from the 2019 World Championships taking part.

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The first of the two Wrestling Ranking Series will begin when the Matteo Pellicone gets underway in Rome from January 15, 2020. The four-day tournament will see seven defending world champions and at least 30 world medal holders from the 2019 World Championships taking part. India will be represented by top wrestlers Ravi Dahiya, Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat in the event.

India’s chances in the high-octane tournament

Dahiya has already qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in the 57 kg weight category courtesy a bronze medal finish at the World Championships that was held in 2019, but will be eager to start the year with a clinical showing. He, however, will not have it easy as he will have to navigate through a number of experienced American wrestlers like Joseph Colon, Daton Fix and Thomas Gilman. While Colon won a bronze in the 61 kg weight division in the World Championships in 2018, Fix is a former junior world champion and won a gold at the Pan American Games last year.

Ravi Dahiya
Ravi Dahiya will not have it easy (Source: UWW)

Bajrang Punia, a bronze medal winner at the 2019 World Championships, might face off against Iranian Behnam Ehsanpoor as he aims to win his fourth gold in the Ranking Series event.

Deepak Punia, a silver medalist in the world championships will begin as the top seed in his 86 kg weight category, with Hassan Yazdani, the defending Olympic champion, not in the fray. His toughest competition, thus, will be Fatih Erdin and Myles Amine. While the former is a 2018 world silver medal winner, Amine has qualified for the Olympics and will be eager to get some form behind him.

There will be high hopes from Vinesh Phogat as well, who enters the event in Rome as the number one seed in the 53 kg weight category. The World Championship bronze medal winner has emerged as a strong contender for a medal in the Tokyo Games, and all eyes will be on her as she moves along in the tournament.

Vinesh Phogat
There will be high hopes from Vinesh Phogat as well, who enters the event in Rome as the number one seed in the 53 kg weight category. (Source: UWW)

The Indian squad for the Rome Ranking Series
Women Wrestling
50Kg Final – Nirmala Devi
53Kg Final – Vinesh Phogat
57Kg Final – Anshu Malik
62Kg Final – Sonam
68Kg Final – Divya Kakran
76Kg Final – Kiran

Men’s Freestyle
57kg – Ravi Dhaiya
65kg – Bajrang Punia
74kg – Jitender
86kg – Deepak Punia
97kg – Satyawart Kadian
125kg – Sumit Malik

Greco-Roman squad
60kg – Gyanender, Sachin Rana
67kg – Ashu
77kg – Gurpreet Singh, Sajan
87kg – Sunil Kumar
97kg – Hardeep
130kg – Naveen

Sarah Waris
Sarah Waris
This English Literature graduate spends her hours gorging on food whilst waiting for the next Indian sporting triumph. A self-confessed Leander Paes admirer, she dreams of watching him play a Davis Cup match one day.
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