Sushil Kumar bagged the Olympic silver medal in the 66kg freestyle wrestling after losing to Japan\\\’s Tatsuhiro Yonemitsu in the final on Sunday.
With this, he became the first Indian to win medals back-to-back in the Olympics, ensuring best medal haul for the nation ever in Olympics.
It was India’s third wrestling medal in Olympic history with K.D Jadhav (1952) and Yogeshwar Dutt (2012) being the previous winners.
Wrestling and shooting provided India two medals each, while women boxing and badminton added one medal each.
India had hoped to add a gold to its kitty when Sushil Kumar reached the final but his Japanese rival, an Asian Games champion, prevailed with his stout defence.
Raj Singh, the Secretary General of the Wrestling federation of India said after the final that Sushil had a bout of diarrhea after his semifinal bout and also vomited as something he had eaten did not agree with him.
He also had a neck injury which he suffered during the semifinal against Kazakhstan’s Akzhurek Tanatarov but that did not affect him, according to Raj.
Sushil trailed 0-1 after the first round and was out of the contest within 30 seconds of the second round when Yonemitsu penetrated his defence, lifted him up and banged him to fetch decisive three points lead.
Sushil had made a stunning comeback in the semifinal but could not repeat that in the final, although he reduced the margin by getting one point.
Earlier, the pin-up boy of Indian wrestling fought the best bout of his life as he came from behind to beat Tantarov 3-1 in the semifinal.
Sushil Kumar can take a bow as he will now be considered at par with legendary hockey players Dhyan Chand and Balbir Singh Sr although theirs was a team sport and were part of back-to-back gold medal winning teams.