Vinesh Phogat is the first Indian woman wrestler to qualify for Tokyo Olympics (Image: PTI File)
Vinesh Phogat on Wednesday became the first Indian wrestler to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Vinesh sealed the India’s first Tokyo Olympics berth in wrestling with an 8-2 win over Sarah Hildebrandt of USA in her second bout of the repechage round. With this win, the Asian Games gold medallist Vinesh Phogat also qualified for the bout for bronze medal at the ongoing Wrestling World Championship. She is now just one win away from clinching her maiden Worlds medal.
Vinesh Phogat will take on two-time world medallist Maria Prevolaraki from Greece in the bronze medal match.
The Asian Games gold medallist has defeated Yuliia Khavaldzhy Blahinya from Ukraine 5-0 in her first bout of the repechage round. Vinesh had lost to reigning champion Mayu Mukaida on Tuesday. However, the Japanese Mukaida later reached the final helping Vinesh stay in the hunt for the bronze medal.
India's Pooja Dhanda registered beat Katsiaryna Hanchar Yanushkevich of Belarus in the Round of 16 to enter the quarterfinals in 59kg.
Seema Bisla’s run at the World Championships ended with a 3-11 loss to Ekaterina Poleshchuk in her repechage second match. She also failed to seal a Tokyo Olympics berth.
India's Sarita lost to European Championship bronze winner Anastasia Nichita in the qualification round of the 57kg category. Kiran Bishnoi lost to 2017 world silver medalist Aline Focken of Germany after in the 76kg qualification match.
Both Sarita and Kiran will be hoping to see their opponents reach the final and send them into the repechage round.