CHENNAI: Wrestler Sumit Malik’s (125kg) hopes of competing at the Tokyo Olympics suffered a major blow as he was handed a two-year ban by the United World Wrestling (UWW) after his ‘B’ sample also returned positive for a prohibited stimulant. The Haryana grappler now has a week to decide whether he wants to appeal against the sanction.
He was banned provisionally last month after failing a dope test conducted during the World Olympic Games Qualifier in Sofia, Bulgaria, in May. He made the Olympic cut during the event by finishing with a silver medal. The 28-year-old Sumit conceded the final bout to his Russian opponent Sergei Kozyrev because of a knee injury, which has been troubling him since last year. He had recovered from the injury before the Asian Qualifier held in Almaty, Kazakhstan, in April but it recurred during the event.
He had also admitted to this daily that he had taken medicines (pain killers) for the knee injury and his physiotherapist had apprised authorities concerned of the same.“He opted for ‘B’ sample and the same was opened for testing on June 30. It also returned positive following which he was banned for two years. Now he has to decide whether he will appeal against the decision or accept the sanction,” an official from Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) told this daily. Given the situation, India in all possibility will now field only seven wrestlers (three men in freestyle and four women) at the upcoming Games.