Vinesh Phogat created history by becoming the first Indian woman wrestler to win a gold medal at the Asian Games, by dismissing her rival with remarkable ease in the 50kg category in Jakarta. She defeated Japan’s Yuki Irie 6-2 to win the 50kg final in Jakarta and was then hoisted on the shoulders of team staff draped in the Indian flag.
Her uncle is Mahavir Singh Phogat, a wrestler on whom Dangal, the film was based. Her cousins Geeta and Babita have won gold in wrestling at the Commonwealth Games.
In 2013 Vinesh won her first international medal, a bronze, at the Asian Wrestling Championship in the freestyle 51 kg category.
Putting behind her heart-breaking loss at the Rio Olympics two years ago, Vinesh began her campaign with a revenge win against Chinese Sun Yanan. It was Sun who was her opponent when she had suffered that terrible leg injury and had to be carried off the mat in tears.
The 23-year-old Vinesh was over the moon yesterday. She claimed she was tired, not of wrestling, but of winning silver medals. “Har baar silver, har baar silver (each time silver, silver each time). So, my only target was to win gold. This was a very big opportunity for me, my body was reacting well to the situations today. Everything worked well so that’s why I could win the gold,” she said.
Many congratulations to Vinesh Phogat for striking Gold in women’s wrestling. We wish her good luck for the future.