File image of Vinesh Phogat© Twitter
Wrestlers Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat, who had sought time till August 10 to prepare for Asian Games and World Championship trials, are set to leave for Kyrgystan and Hungary respectively for training with Sports Ministry approving their tours. The two wrestlers, who were at the forefront of the protest against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, had sent their proposals a few days back.
The wrestlers are set to leave in the first week of July, a clear indication that they will not return to streets for protest, as they had announced on social media recently.
While Punia will head to Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyzstan for 36 days, Vinesh will first travel to Bishkek for a week and then to Tata, Hungary for 18 days of training.
Vinesh will be accompanied by physiotherapist Ashwini Jeevan Patil, coach Sudesh and sparring partner Sangeeta Phogat, who is Punia’s wife and was a part of the protest,.
Punia will have coach Sujeet Maan, physiotherapist Anuj Gupta, sparring partner Jitender Kinha and strength and conditioning expert Kaazi Hasan in his entourage.
Olympic Gold Quest (OGQ), a non-profit sports promotion foundation, will bear expense of Pail, Gupta and Hasan.
The IOA-appointed ad-hoc panel, overseeing the game, had reduced the upcoming selections trials to a one-bout competition for six protesting wrestlers, who will be required to beat just the winners of the trials to seal their places in the Indian teams for the two prestigious events.
The decision by the IOA panel had evoked strong criticism from the wrestling fraternity.
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