Ravi Kumar Dahiya produced a sensational show on Wednesday from he made a brilliant comeback from 2-9 down to beat Kazakhstan’s Nurislam Sanayev to enter the gold medal match in the Men’s 57kg Freestyle event at the Tokyo Olympics. With the win, Ravi assured India of its fourth Olympic medal and he will bring home at least a silver. Ravi showed great courage, tenacity and determination to keep up his belief despite a heavy deficit and got a victory by fall.
In the last few seconds of the semi-final, Ravi was trying to pin down Sanayev upon getting a good grip on his leg and that was the only way he could have won that match. Ravi did complete his move and get the victory but not without enduring pain on the way.
While Ravi was trying to pin down Sanayev, the Kazakhstan wrestler bit him on the arm causing him a great deal of him. After getting the win by fall, Ravi even showed his arm to the referee but he had already won the bout and nothing was done about it.
Ravi has now emulated Sushil Kumar, who won a historic silver at the London 2012, becoming the first ever wrestler from India to do so. Come Thursday, Ravi will have a chance to write a golden chapter in Indian wrestling history as he vies for the top prize.
In wrestling, this is India’s sixth ever medal at the quadrennial Games. Before Ravi, KD Jadhav had become India’s first wrestler — and the first individual Olympic medallist — to win a bronze at the 1952 Helsinki Games.
After that, Sushil won a bronze at the 2008 Beijing Games and then bettered it by grabbing a silver at the 2012 Longon Olympics. At London 2012, Yogeshwar Dutt had also won a bronze in wrestling for India.
In Rio 2016, Sakshi Malik became the first Indian woman wrestler to win an Olympic medal when he bagged a bronze.
Following Ravi entry into the final, there was celebration galore in his native village ‘Nahri’. His relatives and the villagers recalled Dahiya’s passion for the sport and strong determination to achieve success at the highest level. Dahiya’s father Rakesh was in a jubilant mood and said, “Ravi will win gold, I am confident. I cannot express happiness in words,” he said turning emotional after his son made a strong comeback to win the bout.