Sakshi moves closer to elusive medal for India in Rio

Rio de Janeiro, Aug 17 (PTI) Woman wrestler Sakshi Malikwas one step away from bagging India’s first medal at the RioOlympic Games as she stormed into the bronze medal play-offwith a dominating 12-3 victory in her 58kg repechage bout,here today. Sakshi gave no chance to Purevdorjiin Orkhon of Mongoliaas she bagged as many as 10 points in the second period afterthe scores were tied 2-2 at the break. Sakshi put up a dominating performance, pinning down heropponent from time to time, besides flipping her over to gainvaluable points. The Mongolian girl, in contrast, could earn just onepoint in the second period to go down tamely in the end. Sakshi will now take on Aisuluu Tynybekova of Kyrgyzstanin the bronze medal play-off. There are two bronze medals on offer in wrestling event.The 23-year-old got a shot to fight for the bronze medaldespite losing in the quarterfinals as the girl who had beatenher in the last eight round – Valeriia Koblova—reached thefinal of 58kg. As Sakshi had reached the quarterfinals in this category,she had to fight only one repechage round as compared to twoopponents for the other Russian girl, whom she had beaten inthe earlier two rounds – pre-quarters and qualification. Koblova had beaten Luisa Niemesch of Germany in thequalification round before defeating MongoliaÂ’s Orkhon in thepre-quarterfinals. Sakshi had to get the better of the Mongolian girl in therepechage round 2 and she did just that to advance to thebronze medal play off. Earlier, Sakshi went down in the quarterfinals afterlosing 2-9 to Koblova. Having conceded one point in the firstperiod of her quarterfinal fight because of passivity, Sakshidid well to earn two points in the second period aftertaking-down the Russian girl. But Koblova, with enormous strength, hit back almostimmediately to pocket four points and then gained another twoto open up a 7-2 lead. The Russian then closed the door on Sakshi by bagginganother two points to win the bout and make the semifinals.In the first two rounds, Sakshi came back from behind toregister impressive wins. More PTI CM ATAT


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