Sonam Malik defeats Sakshi Malik: Sonam Malik defeated Olympic medallist Sakshi Malik for the third time. The current face-off took place at the 23rd Women’s Wrestling National Championships on Saturday.
Sonam retained the national title as the score settled at 7-5. Not only did the 19-year-old wrestler claim the gold medal in the 62kg weight category, but also moved closer to the Olympic selections. The Olympic selection trials will take place in March.
Sonam started slowly while Sakshi gained points initially. The senior pro started the round with a double leg attack followed by a takedown to get four points in the opening minute. Retaining her stamina Sonam, gained a few points after throwing the Rio Olympics bronze medallist out of bounds. However, this isn’t a fluky win for Sonam Malik. Previously, the young grappler has beaten Sakshi Malik in the trials for the Asian Olympic qualifiers in February 2020. Later, she pinned down the senior wrestler in the trials for the Asian Championships in January the same year.
Soman reached the mat for the finals after defeating Manisha 3-2 in the quarterfinal. The latter who belongs to Haryana bagged the bronze medal along with Madhya Pradesh’s Pushpa.
Wrestler Anju, from Haryana, also claimed the top honours in the 55 kg with Delhi’s Bunty settling for silver and Indu Tomar of Uttar Pradesh and Delhi’s Sushma Shokin winning the bronze.
In 57 kg, Haryana once again dominated with Anshu pocketing the gold medal and Mansi claiming the bronze.
On the other hand, for Sakshi Malik who seems a little out of form, this loss is a huge disappointment. Also, she hasn’t qualified for the Tokyo Olympics yet. After her Olympic acclamation, the wrestler did see much success. Malik has previously won a bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games, 2018, in the Gold Coast, 62kg category. She also won a silver at the Asian wrestling championships, 2020, in the 65kg category, a non-Olympic weight division. However, other than these achievements she hasn’t made it to the final round in any of the prominent events.