The Sushil Kumar-Narsingh Yadav off-the-mat tussle over who represents India in Rio 2016 in the 74-kg Freestyle Wrestling category seems set to be resolved only during Delhi High Court hearing scheduled for May 27, after a meeting between Sushil and Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) on Tuesday saw the deadlock remain unbroken.
After the Delhi HC asked for WFI to hear Sushil's case after the preliminary hearing on Tuesday, the meeting between concerned parties took place today in New Delhi as Sushil made his case for a trial to WFI.
With indications all the while has been that WFI is determined not to have a trial to choose between Sushil and Narsingh, the federation President Brij Bhushan Singh said their minds are made up and the final decision will now be taken by the court.
WFI has taken the decision, will share it with the court, says BBS Singh (President, Wrestling Federation of India) on Sushil Kumar— ANI (@ANI_news) May 18, 2016
I have never given any wrestler including Sushil the assurance of a trial: President, Wrestling Federation of India— ANI (@ANI_news) May 18, 2016
Won't allow Sushil to be in the national camp until the next High Court hearing on May 27 - WFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh— Mihir Vasavda (@mihirsv) May 18, 2016
After the hour and a half long meeting, Sushil said that he has put all his points forward to the WFI and will wait for a final decision.
I spoke to the Wrestling Federation of India and it was a positive meeting, says Wrestler Sushil Kumar #RioOlympics2016— ANI (@ANI_news) May 18, 2016
Narsingh is like my brother. Unfortunately, situation is such that i have to fight for trial against him - Sushil— Mihir Vasavda (@mihirsv) May 18, 2016
But it looks like the only hope remaining for Sushil is a ruling in favour from Delhi HC, which, from developments on Tuesday during the first hearing, seems unlikely.
They won't say it but it's evident now. There will be no trials unless the High Court rules in Sushil's favour on May 27 #wrestling— Mihir Vasavda (@mihirsv) May 18, 2016
The Background Story:
After his name did not figure in India's Rio preparatory camp, 32-year-old Sushil moved the Delhi High Court on Monday with a plea to direct the WFI to conduct a selection trial to decide who will represent India in the men's 74kg freestyle category at the Rio Games.
The former world champion had taken the matter to the doorsteps of the Prime Minister's Office as well. He, though, is yet to get a response. He had also appealed to the Sports Ministry, Indian Olympic Association and the WFI. The Sports Ministry did not want to intervene either.
According to the rules, a quota belongs to the country and not to a particular wrestler and, thus, it was expected that a trial would be held in the contentious 74kg category to chose between Sushil and Narsingh Yadav.
WFI has been giving hints that it is not too keen on holding the trial in 74kg division, fearing demands from other wrestlers in the remaining seven weight categories India has earned quotas for Rio Games.
Narsingh has been staking his claim to represent India at the Olympics since last year when he secured a quota place at the World Championship in Las Vegas after winning a bronze in 74kg. Sushil, who missed the event due to a shoulder injury, has been demanding a trial.