The wrestler has several accolades to his name in a glorious career.
Sushil Kumar is the most renowned figure when it comes to the sport of wrestling in India. The freestyle wrestler is one of the most popular sportspersons in the country. He has served India well at the international level, bringing a lot of glory home.
Thanks to his achievements, Sushil Kumar has inspired a lot of youngsters to take up the sport of wrestling. His efforts have brought attention to the sport and helped in its growth over the years.
Sushil Kumar is in the later stages of his career now and the list of his achievements is a long one. Looking back at his impressive list of achievements, here are the top five most notable ones:
5. Three gold medals at Commonwealth Games
Sushil Kumar has excelled at every Commonwealth Games he has participated in. His performances in the international meets is commendable. The wrestler has won three gold medals across three different editions. The first came in the 2010 Delhi games, where Kumar won the gold in the 66 kg freestyle event in front of millions of Indians.
The second gold was achieved at the 2014 Glasgow games by the wrestler. He contested in the 74kg freestyle category and defeated Qamar Abbas in the final. Third successive gold medal was won during the 2018 games in Australia. He contested in the 74kg freestyle category again, and defeated South Africa’s Johannes Botha.
4. Gold in World Championships in 2010
Sushil Kumar earned a well deserved gold medal at the wrestling World Championships held in Moscow in 2010. By doing so, he created history becoming the first ever wrestler to win a gold in the world championships.
The gold was a huge motivator for Kumar leading up to the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi. He defeated Alan Gogaev of Russia in the finals in the 66 kg category by a 3 – 1 score. Gogaev was the local favorite to win the title but Sushil Kumar was too strong for him.
3. National honours
Sushil Kumar has been rightly recognised by the Government of India for his incredible contribution to the country in sports. As an acknowledgement to his achievements, Kumar has been awarded several national awards.
He was conferred with the Arjuna Award in 2005. Later in July 2009, he was honored with the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award, the highest sporting honor in India. Furthermore, he was also conferred the Padma Shri in 2011, which is the fourth-highest civilian honor in India.
2. Bronze in Beijing 2008
Sushil Kumar truly came into the limelight when he secured the bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. After losing in the first round of the 66kg freestyle event, his medal hopes were left with the repechage rounds.
The wrestler came up against Leonid Spiridonov of Kazakhstan in the bronze medal match. The Indian impressively won the bout by a score of 3 – 1 and secured India’s third individual medal at the games. India finished with one gold and two bronze medals in the Beijing Olympics.
1. Silver in London 2012
Sushil Kumar was in the peak years of his career heading into the 2012 London Olympics. The Delhi-born athlete had won the gold in both World Championships and the Commonwealth Games leading up to the major event. Kumar won the silver medal in the 66kg freestyle event after losing the final to Japan’s Tatsuhiro Yonemitsu.
In the process of winning the silver, he became the first ever Indian athlete to win two individual medals at the Olympics. Thanks to his efforts, India were able to win a second silver at the London games. The country finished with two silver and four bronze medals in total, an improvement from the last edition.