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Rio 2016: 5 must-know facts about Indian Olympian Sakshi Malik

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 18 August 2016, 11:03 IST

Sakshi Malik ended India's medal drought in the Rio Olympics 2016 by winning a bronze medal in the women's freestyle 58 kg category. Malik made a comeback from 0-5 down to 8-5, to defeat reigning Asia championship Aisuluu Tynybekova of Kyrgyzstan in the women's freestyle 58 kg category.

Malik has become the first Indian woman wrestler to win a medal at the Olympics. With this win, she also became the fourth Indian wrestler to win a medal in the Olympics after Khashaba Dadasaheb Jadhav, two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar and Yogeshwar Dutt.

Here are five must-know facts about Sakshi Malik:

1. She is one of the 35 athletes from the Indian Railways to represent the nation at the biggest sporting event of the world - Rio Olympics 2016. Indian Railways awarded Sakshi Malik with Rs 50 lakh for the win, as its employee.

2. In her early years and for most of her career, Sakshi Malik had lived in Geeta Phogat's shadow. In December 2015, Sakshi overcame Geeta in the Pro Wrestling League and last month at the national trails, she dominated Geeta 8-1 to be part of the Asian Olympic qualifier team for Astana.

3. The 23-year-old from Mokhra village, Haryana, began her training in wrestling as a 12-year-old under the guidance of Ishwar Dahiya. Dahiya faced protests from the locals, when he took Sakshi under his wing to train her. In her early years, she had to wrestle boys in the akhara, as she belongs to region where girls don't wrestle.

4. Sakshi began her international career by winning a silver in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. She got her berth qualified by defeating Chinese Lan Zhang in the semifinal, at Istanbul, in the qualifiers.

5. She won a bronze medal in the Commonwealth Wrestling Championship in Johannesburg in 2013 and Asian Championships 2015 in Doha.

First published: 18 August 2016, 11:03 IST
 
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