Sakshi Malik wins gold in UWW Ranking SeriesWFI
Sakshi Malik’s struggle was nowhere to be seen as a fearless and aggressive Rio Olympics bronze medalist won her first international gold medal in almost five years at the UWW Ranking Series event in Almaty on Friday. India’s Mansi (57kg) and Divya Kakran (68kg) also topped the podium finishes. Another Indian, Pooja, won a bronze medal in the 76kg category. But it was the day of Sakshi, who had been struggling until the recent CWG trials. She was losing to young Sonam Malik in the 62kg category and even failed to qualify for the Tokyo Games, but on Friday, things changed for the better as she competed with great confidence.
It started with a technical lead win over Kazakhstan’s Irina Kuznetsova and then another 9-3 victory over Uzbekistan’s Roshana Abedersolova.
As Mongolia’s Tserenchemd Sikhi lost her semifinal, Sakshi advanced to the final, where she defeated Kuznetsova 7-4 to defeat the domestic wrestler for the second time in a day.
Sakshi stood outside with her double-legged attacks and agility, barely letting her opponents breathe. Even when his opponent won the challenge to take a 5-3 lead, Sakshi did not give up and won by a landslide.
The last time he won a gold medal at the 2017 Commonwealth Championships, he won two bronze medals at the 2020 and 2022 Asian Championships.
Mansi (57kg) also won the gold medal, winning his final 3-0 against Kazakhstan’s Emma Tessina, who struggled to advance. Mansi got push out points as most of the wrestlers were involved in standing wrestling.
Divya won her two bouts by falling, against Mongolia’s Delgarma Ankhsaikhan and Kazakhstan’s Albina Kergildinova – but lost 10-14 in the final to Mongolia’s Bolortinglag Zurigat in the 68kg category of four wrestlers.
Zurigat also finished with two wins and one defeat (against Delgerma) but since Divya had more reliable results, she was declared the winner.
India now won five medals, including a Greco-Roman wrestler Neeraj, by winning a bronze medal in the 63kg category on Thursday.
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