Pakistan’s wrestlers kept winning medals there at Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, but a gold on Saturday eluded them once more.
In his first international competition, Mohammad Sharif Tahir came the closest in the Coventry Arena. But like his countryman Inam Butt on Friday, he was unable to defeat an adversary from India in the end.
Sharif was defeated 9-0 by Naveen Kumar in the 74 kg final, just after his teammate Ali Asad had won bronze by defeating Suraj Singh of New Zealand 11-0 in the 57 kg event.
Ali had previously fallen to opponent Ravi Kumar across the border, and later that evening Tayyab Raza’s bronze-medal fight against Deepak Nehra at 97 kg prolonged India’s dominance of Pakistan in the ring.Only Sharif was able to advance to the final among the Pakistani trio who had all reached the semi-finals in her respective divisions.
Sharif had the opportunity to exact justice on behalf of Pakistan after Inam, the best wrestler in the nation, fell to Deepak Punia with in 86 kg final. However, Naveen was in charge in the opening frame and prevented Sharif from scoring. By pinning his opponent, the Indian wrestler opened up a 2-0 advantage.
Naveen held his footing for the final 3 minutes until pinned and rolling Sharif with in ring to win the gold medal.
In the round of 16, John Vake of Tonga was defeated by Sharif by a score of 11-0 before he defeated a Canadian.