The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) on Thursday said it will consider feedback from the Tokyo Olympic medallists Bajrang Punia and Ravi Kumar Dahiya before choosing their coaching staff in the new Olympic cycle. The WFI won’t be acknowledging any interference of NGOs like JSW and OGQ in the name of support to the competitors.
Bajrang Punia was trained by the Georgian Shako Bentinidis while Ravi Kumar Dahiya was coached by the Russian Kamal Malikov. Deepak Punia too was trained by Russia’s Murad Gaidarov. Murad was expelled from the Tokyo Olympic games after he had assaulted the referee who was in charge of the men’s 86kg freestyle bronze medal match between Deepak Punia and San Marino’s Myles Amine.
All the coaches have had their contracts until the Tokyo Olympics with renewals to be finalised in the upcoming days after the WFI hear what the wrestlers have to say who are currently caught up with being felicitated for their display in Tokyo.
It is understood that both Bajrang Punia and his coach Shako Bentinidis want to continue their partnership.
“Bajrang has a medal working with Shako Bentinidis. We will sit with him and listen to his view about his game. If he wants to continue (with Shako), we will consider that,” WFI President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh told PTI.
The WFI are not happy with the way Ravi Kumar has been managed by personal coach Kamal Malikov. The federation is angered at the non-profit sports NGOs like the OGQ and JSW for handling the wrestlers the way they currently are.