New Delhi: Veteran Geeta Phogat and youngster Vinesh qualified for the World Wrestling Championships for women even as an injured Babita Kumari missed the selection trials, held at the SAI Training Centre in Lucknow on Monday.
Glasgow Commonwealth Games gold medallist Vinesh got the better of Ritu Phogat in the 48kg wrestling to book a berth at the World Championships in Las Vegas from September 7-12, which will also be the first qualification tournament for next year's Rio Olympics.
The eldest of the Phogat sisters and veteran grappler Geeta made the cut after beating Shakshi Malik in the 58kg division. In Babita's 53 kg category, however, the winner, Nirmala Devi was selected only for the Kazakhstan competition, which will be held before the World Championships, from July 24-27.
The decision was earlier taken by the selection committee after taking into consideration Babita's request and her past performance. The winner will now attend trials with Babita to book a berth for the World Championships. The date of the trial will be decided later.
Lalita (55kg), Sarita (60kg), Anita (63kg), Navjot (69kg) and Nikki (75kg) were the other wrestlers to have made it to the prestigious event after beating their respective opponents.
WFI President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh said, "Our women wrestlers have been working very hard on various aspects of the game at the national camp which is already underway at SAI Centre in Lucknow since November 2014. The International Wrestling Tournament in Kazakhstan will be an ideal opportunity for our Indian Women team to get international exposure before going into World Championship."
Among the selected wrestlers, Olympian Geeta (58 kg) of Haryana, who had won bronze medal at the World Championship in 2012, will be aiming for a different colour medal this time around.
The selection committee comprising Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh (chairman), Secretary General V N Prasad (convener), Executive member Rekha Yadav, chief coach A N Yadav and foreign coach Roin Doboriginidze selected the eight-member women's team.