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Deepak comes of age, crowned world No. 1; Vinesh No. 2

Deepak comes of age, crowned world No. 1; Vinesh No. 2

NEW DELHI, September 27

World Championships silver medallist wrestler Deepak Punia has jumped to world No. 1 position in the 86kg category but Bajrang Punia lost the top spot in the 65kg category in the latest rankings issued by the United World Wrestling (UWW), the sport's international governing.

Competing in his maiden senior World Championships in Nur-Sultan, Punia settled for silver after an ankle injury forced him to pull out of the final against Iranian great Hasan Yazdani. The 20-year-old Jhajjar lad now has 82 points, four more than world champion Yazdani. This year, Punia had won silver at the Yasar Dogu tournament and bronze at the Asian Championships and Sassari tournaments. He has been rewarded for his consistent show. However, Bajrang, who went into the World Championships as the world No. 1, dropped to No. 2 spot after managing to win only a bronze. The 25-year-old now has 63 points while Russia's Gadzhimurad Rashidov, who won gold at the Nur-Sultan meet, is the new world No. 1 in the 65kg category. In the 57kg category, World Championships bronze medallist Ravi Dahiya has entered the top-five bracket. He is ranked No. 5 with 39 points while Rahul Aware's bronze has pushed him to world No. 2. Meanwhile, in the women's rankings, Vinesh Phogat, who also won bronze in Nur-Sultan along with the Tokyo Olympics quota, has jumped to No. 2 in the 53kg category, gaining four places after her stupendous show last week.

In the 50kg categoy, Seema Bisla has dropped a rung to No. 3 while Pooja Dhanda (32) is ranked No. 5 in the 59kg category, two places behind compatriot Manju Kumari (40). — PTI
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