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WFI to take call on foreign coaches' extension after Nationals in November

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Bajrang Punia with his coach Shako Bentinidis.


WFI to take call on foreign coaches' extension after Nationals in November

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SportsCafe Desk


The WFI has a lot of thinking to do, as far as the countries foreign coaches for freestyle wrestling are concerned. The association will take a call on the same, after the Nationals in November, where the opinions of the wrestlers will be taken into consideration before making any decision.

The WFI is yet to take a decision on the existing foreign coaches of some of the star wrestlers in the country, and will consider an extension for them only after the National Championship in November. Tokyo bronze medalist Bajrang Punia trains with Georgian Shako Bentinidis while Russian Kamal Malikov trains with Ravi Dahiya.

The federation will also have to take a call whether the women wrestlers in the national camp need a foreign coach, a position which was last occupied by American Andrew Cook. Back in October 2019, the WFI had also sacked Iranian Hossein Karimi. Since then, Jagmender Singh has been overlooking the preparations for the men's team. 

The World Championship is scheduled to begin in Oslo from October 2, while the Nationals will be played in Gonda, from November 29. 

"We have not yet held meeting with the wrestlers. We will take their inputs also. All the wrestlers are now focused on World Championship and after that, they will take some rest before the Nationals. Only after that, we will discuss this issue with our prominent wrestlers," WFI Assistant Secretary Vinod Tomar told PTI.

Also, the association doesn't look very keen on a foreign coach for the women's team, as it has not reaped much benefits. Lastly, they would have to look at the case of Deepak Punia, whose Russian coach Murad Gaidarov was sacked after he assaulted a referee during the Tokyo Games.

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