A day after Amit Kumar clinched India’s first medal at the Wrestling World Championships in Budapest, the grappler courted controversy by alleging that a refereeing decision in the 55kg category final had cost him the gold medal.
The contentious decision came in the dying minutes of the second round, when Amit conceded a caution point, thereby handing the gold medal to Iran’s Hassan Farman Rahimi.
While Kumar told a news agency that he was “disappointed” by the 1-2 defeat, India’s chief coach Virender Kumar, who is accompanying the 24-member Indian contingent to Hungary, sought to play down the refereeing error.
“It was a bad decision from the referee but referees can sometimes make mistakes,” Kumar told MiD DAY from Budapest. Kumar also added that he had high hopes from the 20-year-old wrestler from Sonepat. “Amit is still very young and has a bright future ahead of him,” Kumar added.
After his final bout, Kumar told PTI: “It was a tough final against Rahimi and we both fought tooth and nail. The referee gave me a warning for engaging in defensive and shadow wrestling.
In reality, it was the other way round as the Iranian was getting back on my moves. He was more defensive and the point should have come my way.”