Greco Roman wrestlers Arjun Halakurki, Neeraj and Sunil Kumar bagged bronze medals as India opened its account on the opening day of the Asian wrestling championships In Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, on Tuesday.
Arjun erased a 3-0 deficit to beat Ali Nourbakhsh of Iran 10-5 but lost to Amangali Bekabolatov of Kazakhstan 10-1 in the 55kg quarterfinals.
As the Kazakh reached the final, Arjun qualified for the bronze medal match, where he defeated home challenger Davaabandi Munkh Erdene 10-7, to hand India its first medal.
Neeraj lost to Tynar Sharshenbekov of Kyrgyzstan 10-4. He got a second life as the Kyrgyz wrestler made it to the 63kg title clash. Neeraj recorded a 7-4 upset win over former Asian champion Islomjon Bakhramov of Uzbekistan in the bronze medal match.
Former Asian champion Sunil Kumar rallied to beat Japanese Masato Sumi, a former Asian silver medallist, 5-3 narrowly but went down to Uzbek Jalgasbay Berdimuratov 8-0 in the semifinals.
The Indian, also a 2019 silver medallist, got the better of Mongolian Batbayar Lutbayar 9-1 to take a bronze medal in 87kg.
Sajan (77kg) lost to Japan’s Kodai Sakuraba 11-1 in a bronze medal contest. Prem (130kg) exited in the first round.
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