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After World crown, Sushil eyes C'wealth gold

Last updated on: September 14, 2010 14:06 IST

After World crown, Sushil eyes C'wealth gold



After his gold medal-winning feat at the World Wrestling Championships, which broke an almost six-decade jinx, wrestler Sushil Kumar has set his sights on next month's Commonwealth Games, where he believes India can produce about 15 champions.

Sushil defeated Russian favourite Gogaev Alan 3-1 in the final off the 66 kg freestyle category to clinch the title in Moscow on Sunday, the achievement ending India's wait for 59 years.

The World champion now wants to win a gold medal at next month's Commonwealth Games.

"Winning a gold medal at the World Championships is a huge achievement for me after the Beijing Olympic Games and before the Commonwealth Games. My next target is to win a gold medal in the Delhi Games," the Haryana grappler said.

"I feel really fortunate to become the first ever Indian wrestler to win a gold at the World Championship. I have been able to achieve this because of the entire country's support and blessings."

Image: Sushil Kumar after winning gold at the World Championships in Moscow on Sunday
Photographs: Reuters

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The Beijing Olympics bronze medallist predicted India will dominate the October sporting extravaganza.

"I firmly believe that Indians can win all the 21 medals in as many categories. I also feel that we can win at least 13-14 gold medals because we have got good practice," he said.

Talking about his achievement, he said, "It was tough, because gold, silver and bronze medallists of the 2008 Beijing Olympics were there in the fray. But my toughest bout was in semi-final against Azerbaijan opponent [Hasanov Jabrayil], as he had recently become European champion, beating Olympic gold and silver medallists."

"I had to face the home favourite from Russia in the final and that was also tough," he added.

After getting a bye in the first round, Sushil beat Akritidis of Greece, Martin Sebastian of Germany and Buyan Jav of Mongolia en route to the summit clash.

Image: Sushil Kumar and Russian grappler Gogaev Alan battle it out on the mat

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