CWG Wrestling: Gold For Vinesh Phogat, Bronze For Sakshi Malik

Ria Das
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Vinesh Phogat wins Spanish Grand Prix

Young Olympian wrestler Vinesh Phogat bagged gold in Women’s 50kg freestyle on Saturday at the 2018 Commonwealth Games (CWG). However, one of India’s biggest medal hopes, Olympic bronze medallist Sakshi Malik, suffered a setback and had to settle for a bronze in the Women's 69kg freestyle category.

With this win, Vinesh became the first Indian woman to win two wrestling gold medals at the Games. She won gold in the 48 kg category in Glasgow four years ago

While the legendary boxer Mary Kom clinched gold in the maiden CWG final, the ace wrestler from the country, Malik showed an average performance in Gold Coast. She defeated Tayla Ford of New Zealand in a nail-biting clash, scoring 6-5 to claim the bronze medal. With this, Malik’s quest for gold has ended.

Meanwhile, Vinesh, the 22-year-old wrestler from Haryana, has giving the nation hope with an astounding but brutal showing in the final to knock down Canada's Jessica Macdonald. This is how she turned around her Rio Olympics heartbreak.

Vinesh's medal was the 23rd gold for India and 51th medal overall

It was a disappointing day for Malik. In the final 62kg Nordic, she settled for the bronze after a thrilling contest against Ford. She was leading 6-2 with seconds to go in the second period before her opponent scored one one-point and a two-pointer to make it 6-5. But she fiercely put up a tough fight against the Nigerian who had beaten her comfortably in the final of the 58kg class in Glasgow four years ago.

A silver medallist at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, and the bronze medal winner at the 2015 Asian Wrestling Championships in Doha, Malik had an overall easy season. Two years later at the Rio Olympics, she became the first Indian woman wrestler to win a medal. In 2017, she bagged a gold at the Commonwealth World Championships but knocked out in the first round of the World Wrestling Championship. Malik had been away from the podium for a while now. And, with her quest ends in CWG, she couldn’t make a mark further either.

Phogat, on the other hand, is a gold medalist at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games, winner of a bronze at the Asian Games and a silver at the Asian Championships.

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