Tokyo Olympics: Bajrang Punia loses in Semi-final; will play for bronze medal
Bajrang Punia fails to qualify for the final of Men's 65kg at the Tokyo Olympics after falling to a 5-12 against Haji Aliyev of Azerbaijan.
The bout started on a rather defensive note, and Bajrang Punia got the first point of the match in his bag when Aliyev was penalised for passivity. But the Azerbaijani soon turned it around with two strong takedowns within a minute to lead 4-1 at the break.
The second half started with Bajrang trying to attack, but Aliyev countered it brilliant to take the Indian down and then twist him around to race to an 8-1 lead with more than 2 minutes to go in the bout. The Indian hit back with a takedown to reduce the deficit to 3-8, before he was thrown out of the mat by the Russian.
A further attack from Aliyev did not really work as Bajrang turned it to a counter to take two more points to make the scoreline 5-9. The Azerbaijani never went into a defensive mode and further took down the Bajrang once again to lead 5-11. A wrong challenge by the Indian camp at this point meant that the match ended with a scoreline of 5-12.
Bajrang Punia will now compete in the bronze medal repechage tomorrow.