Big boys from Haryana deliver when it matters
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The final of the 96 kg category pitted wrestlers from Delhi and Haryana, the two prominent nurseries of the sport in the country.
The outcome of the match between Delhi's Sumit and Haryana's Parvesh Kumar was crucial to their respective states' chances of winning the championship. The importance of this particular match and the status of the states these wrestlers represented made this a marquee contest. Pound for pound there was nothing much to chose between these wrestlers. That was till the bout started.
In the first period, Parvesh struggled to counter Sumit's reach but a slight dip in concentration from the Delhi wrestler proved to be costly as his opponent from Landrawan made the most of the opportunity.
It was one-way traffic in the second period. All Parvesh had to do was dodge Sumit's lunges, move his body across and over pin him and bag a point. Four of the six points that he won came from this counter-attacking strategy. The 6-3 margin meant that the Haryana lad had won his first senior National gold.
"He had won the Bharat Kesari and Hind Kesari and had bagged Asian Cadet gold in the past. But this is his biggest win," coach Raj Singh Chikara said about his 23-year-old nephew.
Sumit had used his height advantage to record a clinical win over Uttar Pradesh's Vikrant in the semifinals. In the rounds up to the final the Delhi wrestler was not stretched. Parvesh had to take a completely different route to the summit clash. In his wins over Gurpal Singh in quarter finals and Manu Pal in the semifinals, Parvesh was trailing in each of these two bouts before making a comeback.
In 84 kg another new kid on the block from Haryana — Somvir coached by his father Suresh Kumar, a former international — bagged gold. The 19-year-old from Rohtak dazzled the crowd with his lightning counter-attacks to beat Punjab's Surajveer Singh for his maiden National title. Somvir bagged the first period 4-2 and completed the rout with a 3-0 verdict.