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Vinesh Phogat returns to action 6 months after Olympics heartbreak

Vinesh Phogat has had a tough time on and off the mat for the last six months. Can she return to her best in 2022?

Vinesh Phogat returns to action 6 months after Olympics heartbreak

The Bridge Desk

Updated: 1 Feb 2022 7:53 AM GMT

Vinesh Phogat will return to the wrestling mat six months after her Tokyo Olympics heartbreak at the United World Wrestling's (UWW) Yasar Dogu international meet in Istanbul from February 24 to 27.

"Vinesh had originally planned to return at the Matteo Pellicone ranking series tournament in Rome from February 4-7. But, the tournament was rescheduled to June by the UWW owing to the spread of Covid-19's omicron variant. Now, Vinesh will take part in the Istanbul meet," a WFI official told TOI.

Vinesh is also set to move her weight category from 53kg to 55kg at the February event.

The reigning Commonwealth Games and Asian Games champion is looking to move on from a disastrous 2021 in her bid to return to the top.

After her defeat in the Olympics quarterfinals last year, she ran into trouble with the wrestling federation. She was suspended for 'three counts of indiscipline' in Tokyo, including her alleged refusal to train with the Indian contingent.

Vinesh then said she was suffering from depression. An attempted return to the sport at the selection trials for the World Championships ended because she was suffering blurred vision - a condition that stemmed from a concussion in 2017.

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