The 28-year-old registered a remarkable performance at the ongoing World Olympic Qualifiers.
Sumit Malik becomes the seventh Indian wrestler to qualify for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics after reaching the final of the ongoing World Olympic Qualifiers in Sofia, Bulgaria.
He will face Russian wrestler Sergel Kozyrev for the Gold medal in the 125 kg freestyle category. The 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medalist will take part in his first Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Sumit Malik showed remarkable toughness during the competition as he overcame many top class wrestlers. In the qualification rounds, he defeated Kyrgyzstan’s wrestler Aiaal Lazarev and Moldovan wrestler Alexandr Romanov respectively.
The Indian grappler was up against Tajikistani wrestler Rustam Iskandari in the quarterfinals. Sumit Malik dominated the match from the start and registered a one-sided victory with a heavy margin of 10-5. He continued his terrific form in the semifinals as well as he overcame the challenge of Venezuela wrestler José Daniel Díaz Robertti.
He crushed José Daniel Díaz Robertti 5-0 to register his place at the Tokyo Olympics.
Dhankar and Kadian crashed out
Earlier, veteran Indian wrestler Amit Dhankar crashed out of the tournament after facing a crushing defeat in his first bout. Moldova’s Mihail Sava beat Amit Dhankar 9-6 to progress into the next round in the 74kg weight category. This could be Dhankar’s last attempt to win a ticket for the Tokyo Olympics. He is a three-time Commonwealth Games gold medallist but hasn’t been able to play at the Olympics yet.
Satywart Kadian also faced disappointment in the 97 kg weight category. He got eliminated from the tournament after facing a defeat in the quarterfinals. Bulgaria’s Ahmed Sultanovich Bataev beat the Indian wrestler to progress into the next round of the World Olympic Qualifiers.
However, Kadian had a great start in the competition as he defeated Puerto Rico’s Evan Amadour Ramos 5-2 in his first bout before crashing out of the tournament.
Three women wrestlers will be in action on Friday to book their place at the Tokyo Olympics.