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Antim Panghal becomes world champion for second time, India wins team c'ship

Antim Panghal defended her World title to create history as the Indian women's team won seven medals at U20 Wrestling World C'ships.

Antim Panghal becomes world champion for second time, India wins team cship

The Bridge Desk

Updated: 19 Aug 2023 2:14 PM GMT

Wrestler Antim Panghal created history on Friday by becoming the first-ever Indian to win back-to-back U20 world titles, as she defeated Maria Yefremova from Ukraine 4-0 in the 53 kg category final.

Besides Panghal, Savita (62 kg) also won the gold medal following a win over Venezuela's Astrid Paola Montero Chirinos in the final.

In a first for India, the women's team doubled the country's joy by winning the team title at a world championship. With three titles on the final day India finished the championships with seven medals - three gold, one silver, and three bronze.

Priya Malik won the 76kg title on Thursday, Antim Kundu bagged a silver in 65kg while Reena (57kg), Arju (68kg), and Harshita (72kg) won a bronze medal each.

Antim Panghal showed no mercy throughout the tournament as she conceded only two points and decimated her opponents with complete authority.

Antim, who recently moved the court challenging Vinesh Phogat's direct entry into the Hangzhou Asian Games, displayed tremendous strength in the final, as she gave no chance to her Ukrainian opponent. With quick movements and leg attacks, Antim sealed the bout.

In the 62kg final, Savita set the mat on fire with a convincing win over Venezuela's A Paola Montero Chirinos.

Savita was dominant from the onset of the bout and started the bout with a two-pointer takedown and kept increasing the lead against a seemingly clueless Chirinos.

By the end of the first period, Savita had raced to a 9-0 lead and finished the point soon after the start of the second period, without conceding a point.

In the third final, Antim Kundu lost to the local favourite Eniko Elekes 2-9.

Earlier on Thursday, Priya, a 22-year-old wrestler from Haryana, beat Laura Celine Kuehn (Germany) 5-0 in the women's 76kg freestyle wrestling final. In a true testament to her skills, Priya went the whole tournament without conceding a single point in any of her matches.

In the men's category, Mohit became the U20 world champion in the men's 61kg.

Mohit is the fourth male wrestler from India after Palwinder Cheema (2001), Ramesh Kumar (2001), and Deepak Punia (2019) to win the gold medal in the history of the U20 World Championships.

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