Amid all the turmoil happening in the Indian wrestling camp, Yogeshwar Dutt strikes a pose of calm determination as the 2012 bronze medalist gets ready to leave on a high. The wrestler admitted that this will his toughest outing but sent out a warning to his rivals about his “new moves” as well.
London was Yogeshwar's highest moment and exemplified the wrestler's never-say-die attitude. After losing his pre-quarterfinal bout, he got a lifeline when his opponent reached the final through the repechage rounds that allow opponents of finalists a second chance, and what a second chance Dutt made out of it! In the bronze-medal play-off, Dutt lost the first round, but with his big heart turned the match on its back and wrestled his through to a well-deserved medal.
Now with years of training but ages behind him, Dutt is a seasoned and grizzly veteran on the mat.
“I wish to go out on a high and I know it is possible,” Yogeshwar said in an exclusive to the Hindu.
At 33, Yogeshwar is the senior-most and the only member of the eight-member Indian wrestling contingent to have past Olympics experience.
He admits, “There is pressure of expectation, pressure of experience, pressure of being the senior-most.”
Admitting also that Rio will be the toughest outing in his career, Dutt talked about how each wrestler knows everyone else beforehand at the Olympics. “Everyone has seen every opponent’s videos. There are no more surprises anymore. This was true before as well, but with every international tournament you participate in, there is a little extra that the opponents get to know about you.
“Since I have been on the circuit the longest, they know me the best. From experience I can say that there are no easy bouts in Olympics, reputation doesn’t matter there,” he adds.
However, the 33-year old may still hold a surprise or two as he claims to have been practising and perfecting some new moves ahead of what could be the last few matches of his illustrious career.
“I have had a lot of success with my earlier techniques, but I have been working on new ones as well. The old ones are not defunct, but you can expect something new as well, depending on the situation,” he concluded.