Geeta Phogat has claimed that her injury, which forced her to stay away from the mat for two years, and the movie ‘Dangal’ made her lose focus for a while. However, Phogat said that she is eager to come back fighting and backed Sushil Kumar and Bajrang Punia to win medals in Jakarta.
Commonwealth Games medalist Geeta Phogat has been a long-standing icon in the Indian wrestling scenario in which she has been an inspiration to young female wrestlers. Phogat has previously won gold at the 2010 CWG in Delhi and has two gold medals in the Commonwealth Championships - all in the 55 kg category. However, Geeta’s recent form on the mat has been criticised due to some below-par performances.
Geeta, whose life story along with that of sister Babita Kumari was turned into a Bollywood movie titled ‘Dangal’ and also starred Aamir Khan in a lead role, admitted that her injury and all the buzz surrounding her movie made her lose focus from wrestling in the last two years.
"I think staying away from wrestling for two years with injury and the movie, I lost my focus. Now I am concentrating just on wrestling. My comeback on the mat hasn't been good. I am training hard to get back into the team. No sport is easy, if you spend time away it will be difficult to make a comeback," Geeta said on the sidelines of the launch of JSW's Inspire Institute of Sports.
29-year old Geeta said she expected women grapplers to return with more medals than last time ahead of this month’s Asian Games in Jakarta. She also backed fellow CWG medalist’s Sushil Kumar and Bajrang Punia to come through at the Asian quadrennial showpiece.
"Women wrestlers got only two (medals) last time but their performance has been good. I observed them in the national camps. Vinesh, Sakshi, and Pooja they seemed confident. This time they will get more medals. The team has prepared well, both the women and men have performed well at recent tournaments
"Bajarang can definitely win gold. He has beaten good wrestlers during his wins at Spain and Turkey. Sushil is an experienced player, a big player. He may not be in good form now but sometimes we can't judge the potential from a single tournament. He has two Olympic medals and three golds in CWG. He has the confidence I am sure he will do well," she added.