'Hotels are full, sleeping on the floor': Two Indian wrestlers stranded at Dubai airport

April 18, 2024
Indian wrestlers Deepak Punia and Sujeet Kalkal have been stranded at the Dubai airport

New Delhi, April 18 (IANS) Indian wrestlers Deepak Punia and Sujeet Kalkal have been stranded at the Dubai airport since Tuesday, because of heavy rains, while enroute to Kyrgyzstan’s Bishkek for the 2024 Paris Olympics qualifiers, sources said.

Speaking to IANS, sources close to wrestlers said that the duo will take flight at 11pm on Thursday and their chances of participation in the tournament is 50-50.

“They have been there for the past two days. Hotels are all full so they are sleeping on the floor at the airport. Their chances of competing in the qualifiers is 50-50. Maybe they will reach Bishkek just before the start of the weigh-in, only if they manage to leave Dubai late tonight.”

The Asian Wrestling Olympic Qualifiers in Bishkek is scheduled to kick-start from April 19. There will be a total of 36 Paris 2024 quotas on offer in 18 weight divisions in Bishkek.

India has fielded seventeen wrestlers.

This qualifier will be the penultimate opportunity for Indian grapplers to secure a quota for the Summer Games. The World Qualification Tournament in Turkey, scheduled in May, will be the final wrestling qualifiers.

Indian squad:

Men’s Greco-Roman: Sumit (60kg), Ashu (67kg), Vikas (77kg), Sunil (87kg), Nitesh (97kg), Naveen (130kg)

Women’s freestyle: Vinesh Phogat (50kg), Anshu Malik (57kg), Mansi (62kg), Nisha (68kg), Reetika Hooda (76kg)

Men’s freestyle: Aman Sehrawat (57kg), Sujeet (65kg), Jaideep (74kg), Deepak Punia (86kg), Deepak (97kg), Sumit (125kg)

–IANS

cs/

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