World number one Bajrang Punia won the gold medal after defeating Viktor Rassadin 13-8 in the finals of men’s 65kg freestyle in the 2019 Ali Aliyev Wrestling Tournament in Kaspiisk, Russia.
Recently, the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) on April 29, 2019 recommended Bajrang Punia for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, the highest sporting honour of India.
• Punia began wrestling at the age of seven and was encouraged to pursue the sport by his father. In 2015, his family moved to Sonepat from Jhajjar district so that he can attend a regional centre of Sports Authority of India.
• He had won the bronze medal in the men’s freestyle 60 kg category at the World Wrestling Championships in 2013.
• At the 2014 Common Wealth Games at Glasgow, Scotland, he had won the silver medal in the men’s freestyle 61 kg category, after losing 1-4 to David Tremblay of Canada.
• At the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea, he had won the silver medal in the Men’s freestyle 61 kg category, after losing 1-3 to Masoud Esmaeilpour of Iran.
• At the Asian Wrestling Championships in 2014 in Astana, Kazakhstan, Punia had won the silver medal in the men’s freestyle 61 kg category, losing 0-4 to Masoud Esmaeilpour of Iran.
• He then won a gold medal at the Asian Wrestling Championship held at Delhi in 2017.