World Wrestling C'ships: Antim Panghal wins bronze, secures Olympic quota
By winning the bronze medal in the 53 kg category at the World Wrestling Championships, Antim Panghal also secured a 2024 Paris Olympics quota place.
Two-time Under 20 world champion Antim Panghal defeated Jonna Malmgren of Sweden 16-6 to win the women's 53 kg category bronze medal at the World Wrestling Championships in Belgrade, Serbia, on Thursday.
With this medal, Antim has also secured an Olympic quota place for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
Up against world number three in the third-place playoff, Antim started aggressively and took a lead of 5-2, but the Swedish wrestler made a comeback to square the game 6-6 at the end of the first period.
In the second period, Antim gave no chance to Malmgren and locked her ankle to perform the move 'fitle' and take a lead of 12-6. Malmgren tried to make a turnaround in the final minutes but Antim defended well and took four more points to make it a win by technical superiority.
Earlier on Wednesday, Antim stunned the reigning World Champion Olivia Dominique Parrish of the USA in the first round and won 3-2.
Continuing her fine run, Antim defeated Roksana Zasina of Polan in the pre-quarterfinals 10-0 to fix her place in the quarterfinals. In the quarterfinals, Antim got the better of Russia's Natalia Malysheva 9-6 to reach the semifinals.
Up against Vanesa Kaladzinskaya in the last four, Antim lost an agonizingly close bout 4-5. This is the first-ever senior World Championships medal for Antim and her second senior medal after silver at the Asian Championships.
Meanwhile, this was the ninth medal in women's freestyle for India at the World Championships and the overall 23rd medal. Vinesh Phogat (2019 and 2022) won two bronze medals and Anshu Malik one silver medal in the past.
Geeta Phogat (2012), Babita Phogat (2012), Pooja Dhanda (2018), Sarita Mor (2021), and Alka Tomar (2006) have all won bronze medals.