File photo of Bajrang Punia.© AFP
Olympic bronze medallist Bajrang Punia (65kg) on Saturday suffered a shock quarterfinal defeat and was out of gold medal contention while Sagar Jaglan will grapple for bronze in the 74kg event at the Wrestling World Championships in Belgrade. Bajrang, a two-time Commonwealth Games champion, succumbed to a technical superiority (10-0) defeat at the hands of 23-year-old Yianni Diakomihalis of the USA in the 65kg quarterfinal bout. The 28-year-old Indian, who has three World Championship medals to his name, will now hope the two-time cadet world champion Diakomihalis reaches the final so that he gets a shot at a bronze medal via the repechage.
Earlier, Bajrang had defeated Cuba’s Alejandro Enrique Valdes Tobier on points (5-4) in the pre quarterfinals.
The 18-year-old Jaglan, on the other hand, continued his quest for a bronze medal in 74kg as he defeated Suldkhuu Olonbayar of Mangolia 7-3.
The World under-20 bronze medallist will take on Yones Aliakbar Emamichoghaei of Iran in the bronze medal match later in the day.
In the 97kg event, Vicky lost his qualification round bout to Samuel Scherrer of Switzerland 2-2. He was out of medal contention along with Pankaj (61kg), who also made an opening round exit after going down to Assyl Aitakyn of Kazakhstan.
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