The Indians finally showed some stomach for fight as Gurpreet Singh pushed world number two Viktor Nemes to the limit before losing a close bout at the World Championships here on Monday.
Up against the 2017 world champion, Gurpreet led 1-0 in the 77kg bout after getting a passivity point against the Serbian and maintained the lead till the end of the first period.
In the second period, it was Gurpreet who conceded a point on passivity but wriggled out of a tricky ground position to avoid more damage.
Viktor, while trying to push Gurpreet out of the mat, lost balance near the edge of the circle and fell with the Indian on him but the referee still handed two points to the Serbian.
India's coach Hargobind Singh challenged the call but lost and as a result, lost one more point. The Serbian kept his lead to advance to the next round.
Nemes later lost his quarterfinal to Kazakhstan's Askhat Dilmukhamedov, who benefitted from debatable refereeing.
It though ended Gurpreet's hopes to stay in contention for a repechage round.
Before losing to Viktor, Gurpreet opened his campaign with a sensational win, pinning Austria's Michael Wagner after wriggling out of a difficult head-lock position.
Also putting up a spirited fight was Manish in 60kg in his 1/16 round against Finland's Lauri Johannes Maekhonen.
He trailed 0-3 after losing first point for passivity but turned it around brilliantly, logging 11 points in a row to win by technical superiority.
Manish was faster and more aggressive on the mat while the Finn hardly attacked.
However, in his next bout against Moldova's world number three Victor Ciobanu, Manish lost by technical superiority.
The Moldovan later lost a fiercely fought quarterfinal to Japan's wily wrestler Kenichiro Fumita, spelling Manish's ouster.
In the 130kg, Naveen was up against 2018 Pan-American champion Oscar Pino Hinds from Cuba and he lost his qualification bout by technical superiority.
Pino has reached the semifinals and if he wins one more bout, Naveen will get a repechage round to be in contention for a bronze medal as well as Tokyo Olympic qualification.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)