Railway wrestlers barred from Haryana selection trials for U-23 nationals, WFI denies allegations

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Express press service

CHENNAI: Indian Railway wrestlers were reportedly barred from the trials held in Rohtak, Haryana on Tuesday to select the state team for U-23 nationals.

More than 10 freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestlers wanted to take part in the trials and represent Haryana as the railways do not field teams in the event.

Incidentally, the city is going to host the three-day U-15 and U-20 Federation Cup starting on Wednesday.

Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) Annual General Meeting is also scheduled to take place at the venue on Thursday. The National U-23 Championship is scheduled for Kochi in the first week of September.

Among those who have reportedly been denied participation are also international medalists. Greco-Roman wrestler Sajan Bhanwal, who last month won bronze at 82kg at the Zouhaier Sghaier Tournament Ranking Series in Tunisia, is one of them.

“Yes, I was not allowed to participate in the trials. We were told that we could only participate if the railways presented their team at the event,” Sajan told this daily.

The Haryana wrestler represented his state in the 2021 U-23 National Championships held in Amethi, Uttar Pradesh.

He finished on the top step of the tournament podium. Sajan also won bronze at 77kg at the Asian U-23 Championship this year. He had also won three consecutive World Junior medals in the past (bronze in 2017, silver in 2018 and bronze in 2019).

Praveen Malik was another wrestler who was forced to miss tryouts.

“I wanted to compete in the 74kg freestyle events, but I was not allowed to. There were also other railroad wrestlers who were denied participation,” he said. .

Kripa Shankar Patel, a former international coach and Indian Railways coach, said he had informed the host association and WFI of the issue but it could not be resolved.

“I spoke to Harayana Wrestling Association Secretary Rakesh Singh but it was to no avail. I also spoke to WFI Assistant Secretary Vinod Tomar and he assured me that the wrestlers could not get together. being denied a chance to participate in the trials for the U-23 Nationals, but the reality on the ground was completely different as more than 10 wrestlers from the Railways were barred from the trials on Tuesday,” Patel said.

The general secretary of the Haryana association, however, said the confusion could have led to a fiasco.

“We don’t have any specific instructions (not to allow railroad wrestlers to compete) from the WFI. We allowed everyone to compete. I think there must be some kind of confusion,” Singh said.

The WFI, however, admitted that it had decided not to allow railroad wrestlers to compete in the Federation Cup representing their respective states. “In the past, a few railroad wrestlers have been found to be involved in corrupt practices at such events. While representing their respective states, they had conceded the fights against their railroad counterparts. Such a practice takes away the “brilliance of the event. We wanted the Federation Cup to be fair and competitive, so we decided not to allow any team from the councils (Services and Railways) to participate in the Federation Cup” said WFI Deputy Secretary Tomar.

Speaking on Kochi’s U-23 nationals, he said, “Railway wrestlers can represent their respective states by qualifying for the selection trials and we have asked all member units to allow them to participate in the tests.”

Tomar also claimed that the tryouts in Rohtak on Tuesday were only held for wrestlers, who were out of the country participating in various international events and thus missed out on the chance to qualify for the events.

It is learned that Haryana had already held state championships a few days ago to choose their team for the U-23 nationals but even there the railway wrestlers were not allowed to compete.

CHENNAI: Indian Railway wrestlers were reportedly barred from the trials held in Rohtak, Haryana on Tuesday to select the state team for U-23 nationals. More than 10 freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestlers wanted to take part in the trials and represent Haryana as the railways do not field teams in the event. Incidentally, the city is going to host the three-day U-15 and U-20 Federation Cup starting on Wednesday. Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) Annual General Meeting is also scheduled to take place at the venue on Thursday. The National U-23 Championship is scheduled for Kochi in the first week of September. Among those who have reportedly been denied participation are also international medalists. Greco-Roman wrestler Sajan Bhanwal, who last month won bronze at 82kg at the Zouhaier Sghaier Tournament Ranking Series in Tunisia, is one of them. “Yes, I was not allowed to participate in the trials. We were told that we could only participate if the railways presented their team at the event,” Sajan told this daily. The Haryana wrestler represented his state in the 2021 U-23 National Championships held in Amethi, Uttar Pradesh. He finished on the top step of the tournament podium. Sajan also won bronze at 77kg at the Asian U-23 Championship this year. He had also won three consecutive World Junior medals in the past (bronze in 2017, silver in 2018 and bronze in 2019). Praveen Malik was another wrestler who was forced to miss tryouts. “I wanted to compete in the 74kg freestyle events, but I was not allowed to. There were also other railroad wrestlers who were denied participation,” he said. . Kripa Shankar Patel, a former international coach and Indian Railways coach, said he had informed the host association and WFI of the issue but it could not be resolved. “I spoke to Harayana Wrestling Association Secretary Rakesh Singh but it was to no avail. I also spoke to WFI Assistant Secretary Vinod Tomar and he assured me that the wrestlers could not get together. being denied a chance to participate in the trials for the U-23 Nationals, but the reality on the ground was completely different as more than 10 wrestlers from the Railways were barred from the trials on Tuesday,” Patel said. The general secretary of the Haryana association, however, said the confusion could have led to a fiasco. “We don’t have any specific instructions (not to allow railroad wrestlers to compete) from the WFI. We allowed everyone to compete. I think there must be some kind of confusion,” Singh said. The WFI, however, admitted that it had decided not to allow railroad wrestlers to compete in the Federation Cup representing their respective states. “In the past, a few railroad wrestlers have been found to be involved in corrupt practices at such events. While representing their respective states, they had conceded the fights against their railroad counterparts. Such a practice takes away the “brilliance of the event. We wanted the Federation Cup to be fair and competitive, so we decided not to allow any team from the councils (Services and Railways) to participate in the Federation Cup” said WFI Deputy Secretary Tomar. Speaking on Kochi’s U-23 nationals, he said, “Railway wrestlers can represent their respective states by qualifying for the selection trials and we have asked all member units to allow them to participate in the tests.” Tomar also claimed that the tryouts in Rohtak on Tuesday were only held for wrestlers, who were out of the country participating in various international events and thus missed out on the chance to qualify for the events. It is learned that Haryana had already held state championships a few days ago to choose their team for the U-23 nationals but even there the railway wrestlers were not allowed to compete.


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