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Tokyo Olympics: Wrestler Bajrang Punia goes off social media to focus on preparation for Games

India’s star wrestler Bajrang Punia said on Monday he would be staying off social media till the Tokyo Olympics. Bajrang is one of the brightest medal prospects for India at the Games which will is scheduled to be held in July-August.

Wrestler Bajrang Punia to stay away from social media to focus on Olympics preparation (WFI Photo)

Wrestler Bajrang Punia to stay away from social media to focus on Olympics preparation (WFI Photo)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Bajrang Punia said on Monday he will be staying off social media till Tokyo Olympics
  • I will be shutting all my social media handles starting from today: Bajrang
  • Bajrang, who has already sealed an Olympic berth, is one of India’s brightest medal prospects

Bajrang Punia is certainly one of the brightest medal prospects for India at the Tokyo Olympics and the wrestler, it seems, wants to leave no stone unturned to finish on the podium at the Games. The Asian Games gold medalist, who competes in the 65kg freestyle category, has decided to stay away from social media until he competes at the Games, which were postponed from last year to July-August in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Taking to Twitter on Monday, Bajrang Punia said: “Mein apne sabhi social media handles ko aaj se band kar raha hu. Ab Olympic ke baad aap sabhi se mulaakaat hogi … ummeed karta hu aap apna pyaar banaye rakhenge ….. jai Hind (sic) (I will be shutting all my social media handles starting from today. Now I will meet all of you after the Olympics…. I hope you will continue to shower me with your love….. Jai Hind),” he said.

Bajrang Punia, who won the World Championships silver medal in 2018, had returned from the USA after training at the Cliff Keen Wrestling Club in Michigan for a month. Bajrang has already sealed a berth at the Tokyo Olympics when he competed at the 2019 World Championships.

Bajrang will next be seen in action in UWW ranking series event — Matteo Pellicone in Italy from Thursday, March 4.

Staying away from social media is not new for athletes, especially in the lead-up to major tournaments such as the Olympics. In 2016, PV Sindhu did not use mobile in the lead-up to the Games and was strictly supervised by coach Pullela Gopichand. Sindhu went on to win the silver medal at the Rio Olympics, finishing second best in the final against Spain’s Carolina Marin.

While social media helps athletes connect to their fans, there have been several voices in the past that have highlighted the downside of it. Former India cricketer Rahul Dravid had revealed he chose to stay away from social media, considering the amount of negativity that one can go through on popular platforms.


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