Rio Olympics: Wrestler Sakshi Malik wins India’s first medal - bronze in 58kg freestyle

Gritty woman wrestler Sakshi Malik ended India's painful wait for a medal at the Rio Olympic Games by clinching the bronze in the 58kg category, pulling off a sensational 8-5 victory over Aisuluu Tynybekova of Kyrgyzstan in the play-off bout.

Sakshi first female wrestler from India to win an Olympic medal

The 23-year-old from Rohtak became only the fourth woman athlete from India to win an Olympic medal as she earned the dramatic win after falling behind 0-5 in the do-or-die bout on day 12.

Weightlifter Karnam Malleshwari (2000, Sydney), boxer MC Mary Kom (2012, London) and shuttler Saina Nehwal (2012, London) were the only other women athletes from India to have won a medal in Olympics.

Who is Sakshi Malik?

Born on September 3, 1992, in Rohtak, Haryana, Sakshi Malik has her supportive parents, Sudesh and Sukhbir, to thank for encouraging her in her unusual career choice.

The 23-year-old from Mokhra village began her training in wrestling as a 12-year-old under the guidance of Ishwar Dahiya at an akhara in the Chotu Ram stadium. Her grooming was helped along by having to fight a lot of boys, in a region where the sport was ‘not for girls’. In fact, Dahiya faced protests from locals when he took Sakshi under his wing.



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