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Sushil, Aware strike gold; Babita settles for silver

Press Trust of India  |  Gold Coast 

Double-Olympic medallist (74kg) and event debutant (57kg) provided the golden touch as snared an impressive four medals on the opening day of the 21st Commonwealth Games' competition here.

Defending champion Sushil barely spent any time on the mat, his final lasting just a minute and 20 seconds, and claimed easy victories to claim his third successive gold at the Games, a love affair that began in 2010 edition.

However, another defending champion phogat (53kg) settled for a silver, while debutant Kiran happily flaunted a hard-earned bronze.

Kiran defeated Mauritian Katouskia Pariadhaven by fall in the repechage of the 76kg category for her first major medal at the international level.

Sushil took very little time to defeat of on technical superiority. The South African came into the bout struggling with a and that just about ended any chance of him getting an upset win over the former world champion Indian.

Prior to the final, Sushil scored easy technical superiority victories over Canada's Jevon Balfour and Pakistan's before scoring a victory by fall over Australia's

The celebrated wrestler, however, doggedly avoided the media after his triumph, refusing to take questions despite repeated requests from even service volunteers.

Aware, on the other hand, prevailed 15-7 over Canada's in an exciting contest during which the Indian was troubled by a groin niggle but chose to carry on with more than a minute left on the clock.

Aware's triumph opened India's gold medal account in the three-day competition at the Games. He also had a smooth passage into the final with comprehensive wins over England's George Ramm, Australia's and Pakistan's

"I have been waiting for this medal for the last 10 years. I can't describe how it feels to claim it. I missed out on 2010, even in 2014, the team was sent without trials. So, I am very happy that I could finally fulfill this dream," said the 26-year-old, who is also the reigning Commonwealth championships gold-medallist.

"My leg was troubling me for a while but I dedicate this to my guru (former CWG gold-medallist Harishchandra Birajdar) who passed away in 2011, I am happy that all the efforts I put in got the result I wanted. I have fulfilled my family's dream. My opponent probably lacked intensity in the final few moments," added the from

However, settled for silver after being outmanuevered by Canada's in the summit clash.

Babita, who claimed a silver in the 2010 edition before a gold in Glasgow, failed to break through her rival's defences, going down 2-5 in the contest.

"I think my weakness today was my attack, I should have been more aggressive but I gave my 100 per cent. I am satisfied with the intensity I put in but obviously I could not get the result I wanted," she said.

"I had a bit of a problem in my knees too but are a wrestler's ornaments. We live with niggles, there is nothing there," she added.

While Babita's bout lacked spark, Aware's showdown with Takahashi was thoroughly engaging. The Indian trailed 6-7 at one stage but claimed points on takedown to recover and keep himself ahead.

made the final after notching wins over Nigeria's Samuel Bose, Sri Lanka's Deepika Dilhani, and Australia's

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, April 12 2018. 15:55 IST
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