Wrestler Narsingh Yadav, who completed a four-year doping ban in July, will return to international competition after the Wrestling Federation of India named him in the 74kg category for the Belgrade World Cup starting on December 12.
“Since Jitender Kumar was not available because of an injury, Narsingh has been given an opportunity in 74kg. It will be a good test for him ahead of trials for Asian Olympic qualifiers,” a WFI official said on Wednesday.
Narsingh, 31, has been training at the Sports Authority of India’s Sonepat centre since September as part of the men’s elite camp. The postponement of the Tokyo Olympics has given him an opportunity to qualify for the Games next year. The others in his division are Jitender Kumar, the Asian Championships silver medallist in March, and double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar.
Narsingh and Sushil were engaged in a bitter court battle to compete in the Rio Olympics after Narsingh, who won bronze at the world championships to earn India’s 74kg qualifying spot, was selected by the federation. Narsingh failed a dope test, dashing his chances of competing at the Rio Olympics.
The Asian Olympic qualifier will be held in Xi’an, China from March 26-29.
The world wrestling body (UWW) cancelled this year’s world championships due to the withdrawal of top nations that did not fulfill UWW’s hosting criteria. A low-key World Cup is being organised in its place.