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Wrestler Bajrang Punia reclaims his number one spot in 65kg category



Just 30 seconds were left on the clock and India’s star wrestler Bajrang Punia was trailing 0-2 in his 65kg final against Mongolia’s Tulga Tumur Ochir at the Matteo Pellicone Ranking Series tournament in Rome.

For the better part of 5 minutes, 30 seconds, Bajrang was concentrating on defending – especially his legs. There were attacking moves, but few and far between. With time running out, Bajrang went for the broke in the last 30 seconds. A lightning move that caught Ochir off-balance resulted in a takedown and handed Bajrang two points, levelling the score at 2-2. For the final few seconds, Bajrang defended well and the match ended in a tie. But since the last scoring point came from Bajrang, he was declared the winner on ‘criteria’.

With the win, Bajrang regained the world No. 1 ranking in the 65kg category. The 27-year-old was placed second in the world rankings before the event.

“I am happy to get some tournament competition under my belt. Wrestling is a contact sport; therefore during these times, I am feeling lucky to be able to compete,” Bajrang told TOI before embarking on the flight back to India.

“Overall, the tournament was very competitive. I had to work hard to win the matches. The Mongolian wrestler, who was my opponent in the final, has also qualified for the Tokyo Olympics. It was a tough match and I got to know the areas I need work on.”

Bajrang had crushed former cadet world champion Selim Kozan of Turkey 7-0 in his opening encounter. He faced stiff competition from USA’s Joseph Christopher McKenna in the semifinal but prevailed 6-3 in the end. In all three matches, Bajrang’s “improved” leg defence came to the fore. “During the lockdown phase as well as after it, I have worked hard on my leg defence. Also, my training at the Michigan University in USA late last year has really helped me,” he said.

Bajrang will now be back in the national camp but wants to train abroad before the Asian Wrestling Championships, scheduled to be held in Almaty, Kazakhstan from April 9 to 11.



Here are top five selling cars in India right now: Watch list



The Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza was the largest-selling sub-4metre compact SUV in India in March 2021. It was followed by the Hyundai Venue, Mahindra Bolero, Tata Nexon and Kia Sonet. Let us have a look at the sales numbers of all these models for the month of March 2021.

Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza – 11,274 units

Continuing its hold over the sub-4metre compact SUV segment, the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza emerged as the best-seller with sales of 11,274 units in March 2021. It is priced between 7.51 lakh and Rs 11.41 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

Hyundai Venue – 10,722 units

Following the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza was the Hyundai Venue with sales of 10,722 units in March 2021. The Venue is available in the price range of Rs 6.87 lakh to Rs 11.67 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

Mahindra Bolero – 8,905 units

The third best-selling sub-4metre compact SUV in March 2021 was the Mahindra Bolero with sales of 8,905 units. It is offered in the price bracket of Rs 8.17 lakh to Rs 9.14 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

Tata Nexon – 8,683 units

At the fourth position was the Tata Nexon with sales of 8,683 units in March 2021. The Nexon’s price starts at Rs 7.10 lakh and goes up to Rs 12.79 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

Kia Sonet – 8,498 units

The fifth and final position on the list of the top five best-selling compact SUVs in March 2021 was occupied by the Kia Sonet, which registered sales of 8,498 units. Its price ranges from Rs 6.79 lakh to Rs 13.19 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

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