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Grappler Sushil to participate in every tourney till Olympics

Source: PTI
December 01, 2011 14:46 IST
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Not in the best of form of late, Olympic bronze medallist wrestler Sushil Kumar wants to participate in each and every tournament leading upto next year's London Games to regain his mojo back.

Making his comeback in the international arena after missing last year's Guangzhou Asian Games due to a shoulder injury, defending champion Sushil failed to recreate the magic and crashed out in the second round of the World Wrestling Championships in Istanbul earlier this year.

And the ace Indian grappler, who is yet to qualify for the London Olympics, wants to utilise every tournament from here on to maximise his chances.

Sushil Kumar"I will participate in all the championships whether big or small leading up to the Olympics, as more you play more experience you gain," the 2008 Beijing Olympics bronze-medallist wrestler said.

Sushil, who who is currently going through the rigours at a preparatory camp in Sonepat, has remained conspicuous by his absence in the mat this year, featuring only in the World Championships in September.

The 66kg freestyle wrestler, however, is confident of making amends for the lost time and said he is completely fit ahead of the packed schedule.

"I am shaping up well, my physical fitness and endurance is good and I am now concentrating on the technical aspects of the game," said Sushil, who is scheduled to fly to London next week to participate in the London Olympic Wrestling Invitational Tournament, a test event ahead of next year's extravaganza.

The Olympian added that he was not disheartened by the loss in the World Championships.

"Victory and defeat are part and parcel of the sport. It was a battle of equals, sometime I beat them and sometimes they get better off me," said Sushil.

An 18-member Indian wrestling squad, including four female grapplers, is scheduled to visit London next week for the two-day trial tournament to be held at country's Excel Center from December 10.

But the trip still remains uncertain as the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) is waiting for the confirmation from the organisers.

The wrestlers are though set to visit USA next month for a month long training camp at Colorado Springs. The selection for the camp will be made later this month.

"The boys will fly to USA for a month-long preparatory camp at Colorado Springs. They will also participate in the Dave Schultz Wrestling championship. It will be an ideal preparation for our wrestlers considering the fact that some of the best athletes across the US will also be there," informed WFI president Dushyant Sharma.

Sharma added that the visit will provide Indian wrestlers a chance to train alongside some of the best in the business and will also give them the right kind of infrastructure to prepare well ahead of the Olympics.

His views were endorsed by Sushil, who said the federation had chalked out a good plan for the wrestlers and added that Colorado Springs will be an ideal place to train.

Sharma also remained confident of maximum number of Indian wrestlers qualifying for the marquee event.

"World Championship is a different scenario altogether, the competition is very tough. But I am hopeful that our boys will make the cut during the upcoming qualifiers," he said.

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