Seema one win away from Tokyo Olympics berth; Nisha, Pooja out of race

Seema Bisla, who lost only two points en route the semifinals, will take on Poland's Anna Lukasiak for a place in the Tokyo Olympics.

Wrestling Mat

Indian wrestler Seema Bisla kept herself in line for Tokyo Games qualification by reaching the semifinals of the World Olympic Qualifiers. (Representative Image)   -  Getty Images

Indian wrestler Seema Bisla kept herself in line for Tokyo Games qualification by reaching the semifinals of the World Olympic Qualifiers but Nisha and Pooja were ousted from the competition, here on Friday.

Competing in the 50kg category, Seema lost only two points en route the semifinals, where she will clash with Poland's Anna Lukasiak for a place in the Tokyo Olympics.

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Seema, who won a bronze at the recent Asian Championship in Almaty, was solid in her defence against Belarus' Anastasiya Yanotava and logged four points in each of the periods to win 8-0.

The Indian was more dominant against Sweden's Emma Jonna Denise Malmgren, whom she pinned with 43 seconds to spare to win the bout. Seema used her power better and stayed aggressive. She was leading 10-2 when she found a way to pin her rival.

Nisha (68kg) went up against the immensely powerful Bulgarian Mimi Hristova in her quarterfinal and lost by technical superiority. The Bulgarian pulled off a breathtaking four-point throw after which Nisha could not find a way to break her rival's defence. The Indian wrestler had won her opening bout by fall against Poland's Natalia Iwona Strzalka.

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Meanwhile, Pooja, the third Indian in the competition, fizzled out in the 76kg opening bout, losing 3-4 to Lithuania's Kamile Gaucaite.

Three Indian women wrestlers have so far qualified for the Tokyo Olympics -- Vinesh Phogat (53kg), Anshu Malik (57kg) and Sonam Malik (62kg).

Men's free style wrestler Sumit Malik had qualified in the 125kg on Thursday and will fight for gold later in the day against Russia's Sergei Kozyrev, the 2018 Youth Olympic champion.

- Naveen Kumar tests COVID-19 positive -

Greco Roman wrestler Naveen Kumar (130kg), who travelled with the Indian squad to Sofia, Bulgaria, to take part in the World Olympic Games Qualifier, has tested positive for COVID-19. 

“Naveen has been isolated from the rest of the squad. He was the only member to test positive for COVID. Other members of the Indian wrestling squad are safe,” said a Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) official on Friday.

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