In a surprising move by the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI), the federation would be reportedly sending names for the World Wrestling Championships before the trials are held for many categories. It has also been reported that the United World Wrestling is oblivious to the development.
While the WFI has announced the selection trials of remaining weight categories of the men’s and women’s freestyle division would be held next week, the last date for submission of names for the Worlds, which would be held from September 14 to 22 was Thursday.
And TOI has reported that the WFI would be forwarding a list of wrestlers on Thursday itself, which would obviously include the name of two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar in the 74kg category.
“We have told the UWW that nine of our wrestlers, including Sushil, are unfit. They will submit their fitness certificate on August 19 and 20. We have informed the world body that if there are any changes in the names sent on August 15, that will be purely on medical grounds, fitness, etc. We haven’t told the UWW that we are conducting trials after the last date for submission of names has expired. The UWW won’t accept the entries and reject them all,” a federation source said, reported TOI.
While this move would raise serious questions over the genuineness of the trials scheduled to be held on August 19 (women’s freestyle, at the SAI centre in Lucknow) and August 20 (men’s, at the IGI Stadium in Delhi), WFI sources has said that they would alter the names as per those results.
“So, let’s say if we are sending Sushil’s name tomorrow (Thursday), assuming that he’ll win the trial comfortably, then his entry will remain. But in case he loses, then we will update the system (tournament organisers entry system) with the name of winning wrestler, telling the UWW that Sushil has been declared unfit and this particular wrestler in his weight category has reported fit for the championships,” the source further explained.
With Sushil Kumar’s main challenger Praveen Rana, already pulling out of the trials, Amit Dhankar could also reportedly be on his way out. This would leave only Jitendra to fight Sushil. “Jitendra is not up to the level of Sushil. That’s why we will be forwarding Sushil’s name and hope it remains the same,” the source added.