Wrestler Bajrang Punia today clinched India’s first gold medal in the 18th Asian Games after beating Takatani Daichi of Japan in the men’s 65 kg freestyle title bout today. Bajrang’s gold win has brought smiles and relief to the Indian contingent which was astonished by the early exit of star wrestler Sushil Kumar here on Sunday.
A matter of great pride, Bajrang Punia has dedicated his gold at Asian Games 2018 to former Prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Prime Minister Narendra Modi also congratulated Bajrang and called it a ‘memorable victory’.
Bajrang, who came into the Asian Games as favorite to win the gold in this category, beat his Japanese opponent 11-8 in the final bout. The young Indian wrestler had won three successive gold medals — CWG (Gold Coast), Tbilisi Grand Prix (Georgia) and Yasar Dogu International (Istanbul) — ahead of the Asian Games. Bajrang emulated his mentor Yogeshwar Dutt, who won gold in the last edition and is now one of the few Asiad gold medal winners in wrestling.
Glad to see the champions soaring the National Flag high with their applaudable performances and it is really a proud moment for each one of us as Bajrang Punia clinched first gold for India.