Tokyo Olympics: Meet the Indian Wrestling Team that will be going for Gold

The Indian wrestling team is all set to wave the National flag high at the Tokyo Olympics.

Indian Wrestlers at the Olympics

When we look into the history books, India has won five medals in wrestling so far in the Olympics. The first medal came back in 1952 in Helsinki when Khashaba Dadasaheb Jadhav took home the Bronze Medal in the Freestyle Bantamweight category.

Sushil Kumar then won two medals at the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympics respectively. The fourth medal came thanks to Yogeshwar Dutt at the 2012 Olympics when Sakshi Malik became the latest medal winner for India in wrestling as she clinched the Bronze Medal in the 2016 London Olympics.

For the Tokyo Olympics, India will have seven representatives. Here is a look at them.

Seema Bisla

Seema was the fourth Indian female wrestler to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics. Hailing from Haryana, she will be competing in the -50KG category at the event and is an Asian Championship Bronze Medalist.

She qualified for the Olympics through the World Olympic Qualification Tournament which was held in Bulgaria in 2020. The 29-year old comes from a family of wrestlers and had started wrestling at a young age itself.

Ravi Kumar Dahiya

The 23-year-old Ravi Kumar Dahiya has an impressive resume to show. Born in Haryana, Ravi started his wrestling journey under Satpal Singh in Delhi.

He bagged a silver medal at the World Junior Wrestling Championships in 2015 and then followed up with medals at the World Under-23 Championships, Asian Championships, and World Championships. He won two medals at the Asian Championship with both being gold. He will be competing in the 57 Kilogram category at the Olympics.

Sonam Malik

A medallist at the National Games and the World Cadet Wrestling Championship, Sonam Malik is from Sonipat in Haryana. The 19-year-old started wrestling after being inspired by her father and cousin. She came to the spotlight after defeating Olympic medallist Sakshi Malik twice in 2020, first in the trials for the Asian Championship and then in the Asian Olympic Qualifiers. She will be competing in the 62Kg category for the Olympics.

Anshu Malik

Anshu Malik will be competing in the -57 KG category at the Olympics. The 19-year-old from Haryana is a two-time gold medallist at the Asian Championship and had won gold at the Asian Junior Championship as well.

Apart from these, she has won medals at the World Cadet Championships, World Junior Wrestling Championships, and Individual World Cup as well.

Anshu started wrestling after being inspired by her father Dharamvir Malik who was an international wrestler.

Deepak Punia

Another wrestler from Haryana in the wrestling team, Deepak Punia will be competing at the 86 KG category at the Tokyo Olympics.

He has been competing for a long time now and has won Gold Medals in the World Junior Wrestling Championships, World Cadet Championships, and Asian Junior Championships. He made his mark at the senior level as well by securing three medals in Asian Championships and a silver medal at the World Championships in 2019.

Bajrang Punia

Only Indian to win three medals at the World Wrestling Championship, Bajrang Punia will be competing in the 65 KG category at the Olympics. Hailing from Haryana, he started wrestling at the age of seven and has been a force to reckon with both nationally and internationally.

He has won seven medals at the Asian Championship and won two gold medals each at the Commonwealth Championships and Commonwealth Games as well. He also two Asian Games medals on his resume along with a gold medal at the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games. He is an Arjuna Award winner and will be one of India’s biggest medal hopes in Wrestling.

Vinesh Phogat

Vinesh Phogat will be going into the Olympics as the top seed. Hailing from the legendary Phogat family, Vinesh will be competing in the 53 KG category.

She is the first Indian female wrestler to win the Gold medal at Commonwealth and Asian Games. Apart from these two, Vinesh has won eight medals at the Asian Championships and won a bronze medal at the World Championship in 2019 as well.

A Khel Ratna and Arjuna Award winner, Vinesh also was the first Indian athlete to be nominated for the Laureus World Sports Awards.

How many medals do you think India can win in Wrestling? Let us know in the comment section of the article below.

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