Sushil Kumar's Olympic dreams over; HC dismisses plea

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Image Courtesy: © Facebook - Sushil Kumar

Sushil Kumar's Olympic dreams over; HC dismisses plea

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Saketh RVK

06/06/2016

The Delhi High Court has rejected wrestler Sushil Kumar’s plea for a selection trial for the Rio Olympic Games. The court has said that though the trail makes for an interesting sound byte, it is not legally tenable. This is virtually a green signal for Narsingh Yadav to board the flight to Rio.

The Delhi High court on Monday struck down Sushil Kumar’s plea for a selection trial to decide who would represent India in the 74kg freestyle category at the 2016 Olympic Games. Dismissing the idea as not legally tenable, Justice Manmohan has also reportedly said that trials so close to the Olympics can disturb an athlete mentally and also risk an injury. This decision from the High Court has virtually given Narsingh Yadav the go ahead to participate in Rio.

Narsingh Yadav, who has been competing in the 74kh welterweight category since 2006, had secured an Olympic quote place for India by winning the bronze medal at the World Championship in 2015. He had earlier won gold at the Asian Championships, the Asian games and the Commonwealth games in the same category. Sushil Kumar, who had to shift from the 66kg lightweight to the 74 kg category, after the former was dropped from the Olympics, missed the World Championship due to injury. According to WFI guidelines, the quota Narsingh won was for the country and not for a particular participant.

This led to Sushil Kumar, two-time Olympic medalist, claiming that a trial should be held to decide India’s representative in that category at the Rio Games. After the WFI had rejected the idea, Sushil moved court.

Earlier, the Delhi High court in a hearing had observed that it did not find "any statutory mandate" to hold trials before the Olympics. With its latest verdict saying that the court cannot interfere in the federation’s selection process. This decision has almost ended Sushil’s chance of his swansong at Rio. Though he can move the Supreme Court for another hearing now, it seems unlikely that it will go in his favour. It is note-worthy that the WFI (Wrestling Federation of India) had conducted trials before the World Championship, which Sushil could not participate in because of an injury.

(Also read - The 10 Greatest Quotes by Muhammad Ali)

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