Traditional wrestling gathers ample love from Pune
Residents thronged the wrestling arena at Somatane Phata in Talegaon over the last two days, where the traditional wrestling national championship is being held. The dipping temperature, too, did not deter people from staying at the venue till late at night. Despite the temperature dipping to 11 degrees Celsius after 7 pm in the evening on both days, the enthusiasm levels of the spectators who stayed till the last bout witnessed no change. The 125 kg final that was played on Sunday saw double the number of audience turn up, to enjoy the game.
The contest saw children and senior citizen’s alike, keenly observing every grappler’s move. The DJ sound system helped set the mood every time a grappler come out to the ring, putting their signature pose on display which was received with applause and cheer.
The audience feasted on the energy levels the mud arena was radiating.
Amasidha Sambhubhaire, a 10-year-old who has accompanied his father on both days of the event said, “I enjoy watching wrestling on TV, but watching it live is really fun”.
Women were also seen thoroughly enjoying the bouts as well. “I don’t understand wrestling, I came to accompany my husband who is a die-hard fan. I have seen a few wrestling tournaments earlier,” said Sheetal Misal. Her husband Somnath said, “Wrestling is at its best when it happens on mud. I don’t enjoy it as much when it is played on the mat. I am happy that it is so nicely organised”.
When the final concluded the crowd shifted into selfie mode and tried their best to get one picture with Vishal Haryana emerged winner defeating Raja Tomar of Services Sports Control Board (SSCB).
“I love wrestling, now I am an assistant Sub-Inspector and don’t wrestle but earlier I used to take part in the competition,” said Sudam Barmatikar who enjoys wrestling on mud.