First in six years and only 4th Indian woman grappler, Pooja Dhanda has won a medal at the World Wrestling Championship held at Budapest in Hungary on Thursday.
Dhanda seized a bronze medal with a striking win of 10-7 over the Grace Jacob Bullen, 2017 European champion.
This year, it is the second big medal for Dhanda while at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast held earlier, she won a silver medal.
Expressing delight and joy over the win, Pooja Dhanda said, “It’s a proud feeling for me. I have done my country proud with this medal. I am very happy with this effort. In the beginning, I had a chance for a counter attack and I got a good lead. I was confident that I will pull it off.”
When asked about her opponent, Dhanda told that she geared herself up to stop her.
Explaining the strategy, Pooja said, “Bullen is strong with her upper body, I had seen her bouts, so my coaches planned that I block my arms and work on lower body. So attacked on the legs and got points.”
Talking about her plans, Pooja informed, “My next target is to win a medal at the Olympics. I feel very confident. I need to work on little things. I will come back to the mat with proper preparation.”
Meanwhile, Sakshi Malik, Rio Olympic bronze medallist once again failed to reach the medal round at the big event.
Sakshi lost the repechage round to Marianna Sastin of Hungary with 2-3 points.