Aman Sehrawat became the first Indian wrestler to be crowned champion in the World under-23 championships in Pontevedra, Spain.
A two-time World under-17 bronze medallist and a current Asian under-23 champion, Aman rallied from 0-2 in the first period to beat a formidable Ahmet Duman of Turkey 12-4 in the final and secure the men’s 57kg freestyle World title in style.
Aman, hailing from Bhirod village of Jhajjar district of Haryana, showcased his swift footwork to defend well and relied on a series of fast attacks to garner points with six sprightly takedowns and record a convincing victory.
Earlier, Aman defeated Sri Lanka’s Hansana Ganegodage 11-0, Japan’s Toshiya Abe 13-2 and Kyrgyzstan’s Bekzat Uulu 10-5 to make it to the title clash.
The 19-year-old from Delhi’s Chhatrasal Stadium, who idolizes two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar and is a keen competitor of his akhara mate Olympic silver medallist Ravi Dahiya, was determined to take the gold.
“I am the Asian under-23 champion, I will try to win World under-23 gold as well. My result will tell everyone what kind of hard work I have put in,” Aman had told Sportstar, after claiming the National Games gold medal in Gandhinagar, days prior to leaving for Spain.
Aman was the only Indian men’s freestyle wrestler to compete in the World under-23 event even as others selected for the championships could not reach Spain due to visa issues.