Olympic qualifiers in April, Indian wrestlers to begin season with senior nationals

The international wrestling season will begin with the Matteo Pellicone event in March. The nationals have been scheduled in January-February.

By Naveen Peter ·

Given the prevailing COVID-19 situation around the world, United World Wrestling (UWW) has decided to move the Asian Olympic Qualifiers to Almaty, Kazakhstan.

The qualifiers, which were initially scheduled to be held in China, will now be hosted by the central Asian nation from April 9-11. The Asian Wrestling Championships will be contested from April 12-17 at the same venue.

“To help with costs and coordination the bureau also voted to combine the Asian Championships and Olympic Qualifier to Almaty, Kazakhstan with the tournaments set to run back-to-back April 9-17,” UWW said in a media statement. 

The latest changes also mean that the 2021 wrestling season will begin only in March with the Matteo Pellicone Ranking Series in Rome from March 4-7.

While Sofia will host the World Olympic Qualifiers from May 6-9, wrestlers around the world could avail the final opportunity to test themselves ahead of the Tokyo Olympics at the Poland Open Ranking Series from June 8-13.

Meanwhile, back home, the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) will organise the Senior National Wrestling Championships at three venues in January-February.

While the men’s freestyle competition will be held at Noida on January 23-24, women’s wrestling events will be organised in Agra on January 30-31. The WFI will host the Greco-Roman meet in Punjab. The dates will be announced soon.

The senior nationals are expected to be followed by the national trials to select the Indian team for the Asian qualifiers and the Asian Championships.