India’s big hopeful for another medal at the Olympics wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt in a big disappointment crashed out 0-3 to Mandakhnaran Ganzorig of Mongolia in his qualification bout, thus ending India’s dismal show at Rio 2016, barring a few moments of joy provided by PV Sindhu, Sakshi Malik and Dipa Karmakar.
The 33-year-old Bronze medallist from 2012 London Olympics struggled from the get-go against the aggressive intent of the Mongolian grappler. Ganzorig moved fast and Dutt looked rusty. He conceded a penalty and a point for passivity.
In the second period, Ganzorig turned a defensive position into a takedown Dutt. He then put two more points on the board as Yogeshwar tried to carve out a comeback. But despite his best efforts on the day, Dutt failed to put the World No. 12 Mongolian on the mat.
Three surgeries and years of injuries seem to have finally taken toll on Yogeshwar even though he had wished for a podium finish in his Olympic swansong.
The medal favourite who had qualified in the 65 kg freestyle wrestling category, then lost his chance Bronze Medal through Repechage when the Mongolian failed to qualify for the semi-finals. India’s seven-member wrestling team to the Olympics had to settle for just for a solitary Bronze medal won by Sakshi Malik.
In 2012, India had secured the highest medal tally from a single Games — six, without a gold — and there were pre-Games projections by the Sports Authority of India that the tally will be doubled here.