Incheon Asian Games gold-medallist Yogeshwar Dutt’s victory —which led Haryana Hammers to a 4-3 win over Bengaluru Yodhas in the Pro Wrestling League —was as sweet as it was poignant.
Soon after winning his bout, when someone asked him how it felt to beat Bajrang, who Yogeshwar treats like his son, the London Olympic Games bronze medallist said on Wednesday, “I am happy I won. But it was not easy for me to fight with Bajrang whom I treat like my son. We both, in fact, tried giving our 100 per cent in the contest but feel that we could not. Fighting with our close ones is not at all easy.”
Everyone gathered here was looking forward to the Bajrang-Yogeshwar contest in the 65kg given the bonding the two grapplers share. However, the ‘master’ came out triumphant, beating Bajrang 3-2 much to the joy of the crowd.
Earlier, Nitin of Haryana beat Sandeep Tomar of Bengaluru 9-8 in 57kg before Tatyana Kit of the home team scored an easy 6-0 win over Lalita Sherawat in the women’s 53kg category.
Pavlo Oliynik brought Bengaluru back with a 10-0 win over Yuri Maier in a one-sided 97kg bout but Geetika Jakhar ensured Haryana’s lead with a technical point victory over Navjot Kaur after both the wrestlers were tied 3-3 in women’s 69kg bout.
Geetika said after her tough bout, “I am here to stay and support my team throughout. I will fight till the time I can.”
It was then left to Yogeshwar to take the contest out of Bengaluru’s reach. Bengaluru won the last two bouts of the contest with Yulia Ratkevich beating Oksana Herhel (11-0) in 58kg and Narsingh Yadav emerging victorious against Livan Lopez Azcuy (8-5) in 74kg but it was too late in the day.