Joshna laments ‘unfair contest’

On September 8, when wrestling floored squash and a combined bid from softball/baseball for the final spot in the 2020 Olympic Programme, the verdict from the general sporting fraternity was that justice has been done. But India’s star squash player Joshna Chinappa, who was recently honoured with the Arjuna Award, feels the ‘contest’ was unfair as it pitted a rookie against an established heavyweight fighter.
“There is no doubt wrestling deserves a place in the Olympics. In fact, it shouldn’t have been dropped in the first place. Because of that, a sport (read as squash) that is attempting its maiden entry to Olympics had to square off against another who had always been in the fray. It was very difficult,” said Chinappa.
Referring to the huge lobbying for squash by Malaysia, Joshna said, “The whole country and the world’s best player (Nicol David) were all pushing for it. But wrestling always had the edge.”
On getting bestowed with Arjuna Award, the Chennai-based player said: “It feels great when a sport like squash is recognised. Receiving the Arjuna Award from the President of India was an overwhelming experience.”

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