New Delhi: Double Olympic-medallist Sushil Kumar's qualification for next year's Commonwealth Games ended in ugly scenes after his supporters clashed with those of rival wrestler Parveen Rana, resulting in an unprecedented brawl after the trials here today.
The selection trial for the Gold Coast Games, to be held in April next year, was organised at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, and was attended by, among others, Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President Brij Bhushan Singh Sharan.
Sushil, who returned to the international arena after three years with a Commonwealth Championships gold, won all his bouts in the 74kg category.
But things took an ugly turn when Rana, after losing to Sushil in the semifinal clash, claimed that the decorated wrestler's supporters beat him and his elder brother "for daring to take the ring" against him. Sushil, on the other hand, claimed that he was bitten by Rana during the bout.
"...He bit me but no problem, it might be his tactics to stop me from performing well. All this is a part of sports," Sushil told reporters after the bouts.
"Whatever happened here was wrong. I condemn it. There was mutual respect after the fight ended," he added.
Incidentally, the 34-year-old Sushil had beaten Rana in the Commonwealth Championships final in South Africa a few weeks back.