Haryana wrestler takes the state to national glory

  • Rashpal Singh, Hindustan Times, Gurgaon
  • Updated: Mar 23, 2016 23:56 IST
Khatri scored one technical point in the first round, after which he adopted a defensive mode. (Parveen Kumar/HT Photo)

Entering the Olympics is 26-year-old Mausam Khatri’s dream, who won the free-style wrestling competition — Bharat Kesri Dangal 2016 in Gurgaon on Wednesday.

Khatri will spend his prize money of `1 crore on strengthening his wrestling skills by taking advanced coaching and going on a strict diet.

The 26-year-old beat Sumit Kumar of the Railways Sports Promotion Board to win the three-day tournament held at Tau Devi Lal Stadium in Gurgaon. He scored one technical point in the first round, after which he adopted a defensive mode. Kumar tried to score over him, but the six-minute bout ended without giving any wow moments to the jam-packed audience. Kumar bagged the `50-lakh prize money.

Khatri aspires to follow the footsteps of Olympic winners Sushil Kumar and Yogeshwar Dutt. “I practise six hours a day and hope to enter the Olympics. Haryanvi brothers Sushil and Yogeshwar inspire me,” Khatri said. A resident of Panji Jatan village in Sonepat district of Haryana, Khatri is a non-vegetarian. His daily diet comprises eggs, chicken and five-seven litres of milk.

The national-level winner was one of the six wrestlers, who failed the doping test for the Common Wealth Games in 2010. The department of sports collected his and other’s samples for the test in this tournament too.

The third and the fourth positions were bagged by Satya Vrat (`25 lakh) and Gurupal (`10 lakh), who got injured in a bout with Sumit Kumar. Gurupal was rushed to a private hospital.

Krishan of Haryana stood fifth, with a cash prize of `5 lakh. Punjab wrestler Gursahib bagged the sixth position with `3 lakh, Devvrat of UP bagged the seventh position with `2 lakh and Hitender of Haryana stood eighth and got `1 lakh.

Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar distributed the prizes to the winners. A total of 78 wrestlers from across the country participated in the tournament.

Indirectly referring to the Jat reservation agitation, Khattar said the incident disturbed communal harmony. He administered the oath of ‘Haryana Ek-Haryanvi Ek’.

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