Bajrang Punia is World No. 1 in 65kg category

The 24-year-old Indian grappler leads the table in the latest United World Wrestling rankings.

No. 1: Bajrang Punia has had a remarkably successful season.   -  PTI

World championships silver medallist Bajrang Punia became the first Indian wrestler to secure the No. 1 slot in the world rankings issued on Saturday.

According to the latest United World Wrestling (UWW) rankings, Punia is now the top-ranked wrestler in men's freestyle 65kg category. “I am happy about the ranking because it reflects India’s overall growth in wrestling. The real celebration time for me will come when I become the Olympic champion,” said Punia.

Fruitful year

Punia, who won gold medals in the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games and bagged a bronze medal in the Asian championships earlier this year, had settled for the silver after losing to Japanese Takuto Otoguro in the Worlds 65kg title clash.

Read: Yogeshwar Dutt happy to have retired for the sake of Bajrang Punia

The Indian, who was seeded No. 3 in the World championships, gathered 96 points from his various performances to rise to the No. 1 ranking.

Cuban Alejandro Enrique Tobier (66) is ranked No. 2, followed by Russian Akhmed Chakaev (62) Otoguro (56) at third and fourth places respectively.

Pooja Dhanda, who won a bronze medal in the World championships, is sixth in the women's 57kg. Ritu Phogat (50kg) is No. 10, Sarita Mor (59kg) is seventh and Navjot Kaur (68kg) and Kiran (76kg) are ninth in their respective weight classes.