Asian Wrestling Championships: Sarita More creates history as she defended 59kg Crown to Become India’s 1st Two-Time Asian Women’s Champion
Earlier on Thursday, Sarita More (IND) became the first Indian woman in history to win a second Asian gold medal when she defeated an opponent who had beaten her earlier in the day.
And she did it after coming back from a five-point hole.
Sarita defended her 59kg crown by rallying to a 10-7 victory in the final Thursday night over two-time world bronze medalist Shoovdor BAATARJAV (MGL) on the third day of the six-day Asian Championships in Almaty.
“I had won the gold medal in 59 in Delhi and I am the first Indian to defend my title,” said Sarita, who turns 26 on Friday. “Last year as well, I had beaten a Mongolian wrestler and now also I did the same. To get my country’s flag on the top in a foreign country is the proudest moment.”
With the women’s tournament at the spectator-less Baluan Sholak Palace of Culture and Sports missing powerhouses Japan and China, limited entries means all weight classes are conducted in round-robin formats.
Sarita and Baatarjav were drawn in the same group, with the Mongolian winning their first encounter 5-4 before they set up the rematch in the final with one-sided wins in the semifinals.
Sarita was familiar with Baatarjav even before the afternoon match. The Mongolian had beaten her 10-0 in the quarterfinals at the 2018 World Championships en route to the first of consecutive bronze medals.
“I had that in mind, but I also wanted to win the gold medal for myself and India,” Sarita said.
In the final, Sarita scored with a stepout before Baatarjav replied with a double-leg takedown for a 2-0 lead. Early in the second period, Baatarjav launched a hip throw at the edge that was awarded 2 points and was challenged by the Indian side — only to have the points revised to 4, with a lost-challenge point added, to give the Mongolian a 7-2 lead.
“When she scored a 4-pointer, I thought that’s big,” Sarita said. “I don’t think it was 4. But it was okay, and I thought I have to cover that if I want to win.
Otgonjargal GANBAATAR (MGL) vs. Vinesh VINESH (IND)
Vinesh VINESH (IND) vs. Meng Hsuan HSIEH (TPE)
Anshu Malik -57kg
Sevara ESHMURATOVA (UZB) vs. Anshu ANSHU (IND)
Anshu ANSHU (IND) vs. Nazira MARSBEK KYZY (KGZ)
Anshu ANSHU (IND) vs. Battsetseg ALTANTSETSEG (MGL)
Sonam Malik – 62Kg
Aisuluu TYNYBEKOVA (KGZ) vs. Sonam SONAM (IND)
Youngjin KWON (KOR) vs. Sonam SONAM (IND)
Irina KUZNETSOVA (KAZ) vs. Sonam SONAM (IND)
Sakshi Malik – 65Kg
Hsin Ping PAI (TPE) vs. Sakshi MALIK (IND)
Sakshi MALIK (IND) vs. Gaukhar MUKATAY (KAZ)
Divya Kakran – 72kg
Divya KAKRAN (IND) vs. Tsevegmed ENKHBAYAR (MGL)
Divya KAKRAN (IND) vs. Zhamila BAKBERGENOVA (KAZ)
Divya KAKRAN (IND) vs. Sujin PARK (KOR)