In a historic achievement, wrestler Ravi Kumar Dahiya became India's 5th medalist and second silver-medalist at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics on Thursday. The 23-year-old returned as a runner-up in the Men's freestyle 57 kg category on his debut at the Summer Games.
Ravi Kumar Dahiya lost 4-7 to the Russian Olympic Committee's Zavur Uguev in the final. 26-year-old Uguev was superior in his attacking and defensive balance on the day. He was nimble enough to find gaps in the Indian's holds and didn't allow much retaliation after taking a 4-2 lead in the first half of the contest.
Uguev eked out the lead to 7-2 in the second half with a dogged take-down. Ravi Kumar Dahiya immediately returned the favor and took the score to 7-4. However, that was the beginning of the end as the Russian shifted to outright defense and swayed off any last-minute tricks by the Indian.
This was Ravi Kumar Dahiya's only defeat in the competition, an unbelievable feat for a debutant. His three wins included a jaw-dropping comeback from 9-2 to a win by a pin in the semi-final. Dhiya became only the second Indian to win an Olympic silver medal in wrestling after Sushil Kumar's identical performance in 2012.
The youngster received a round of applause from his proud fans and the whole country for his superb effort on the biggest stage. Personalities and stars from all walks came forward to congratulate him, including former Indian cricketers and members of the fraternity.
Here is how the Indian cricketing fraternity reacted to Ravi Kumar Dahiya's performance:
Former India openers Wasim Jaffer and Gautam Gambhir were among the first to come forward to congratulate the wrestler. Later, the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, VVS Laxman and Harmanpreet Kaur, among others, also shared their best wishes.
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