Dimapur August 12,2017: Six wrestlers from the state have been selected to represent the country in both traditional and belt wrestling championships at the forthcoming 5th Asian Indoor & Martial Arts Games (AIMAG) scheduled to be held from September 17 to 27 at Ashgabat, Turkmenistan under central Asia.
Announcing this during a press conference yesterday, the NWA officials informed that a total of 42 countries will be taking part in the Games. Naga wrestlers will compete in the tournament representing the National Traditional Wrestling Federation – India (NTWFI).
The six wrestlers are from the Angami and Chakhesang tribes, namely Vechita Khesoh, Keduovilie Zumu, Surhoneyi Soho, Visevo Zashüm, Venuzo Dawhuo and Menuosetuo Yiese.Reigning NWA champion Vechita Khesoh will compete in the 100 plus kg category while Chakhesang wrestlers Surhonieyi Soho and Venuzo Dawhuo, both former open Naga wrestling champions will compete in 94 kg and 74 kgs respectively.
Angami wrestler Menuosetuo Yiese, runner-up in this year’s open Naga wrestling championship, will compete in the 96 kg category, while former NASA champion and fourth position holder at the NWA tournament 2016, Keduovilie Zumu will compete in the 94 kg. Veteran Angami wrestler and two-time SASA champion Visevo Zashümo will compete in 84 kg.
A majority of the selected wrestlers were part of the NWA team at the National Traditional Wrestling Championship organised by the NTWFI in Pune last year during which 11 out of 13 Naga wrestlers won medals.The wrestlers will depart with the Indian contingent on September 13 at New Delhi and will be accompanied by NWA President Neivikuolie Nicholas Khatsü, Secretary Vekhozo and Vice President Mitwatei Haibwang.
NWA officials expressed hope that all if not some of the Naga wrestlers will win medals for the country.NWA president Neivikuolie Khatsü was thankful to the NTWFI for giving NWA the opportunity to take part at the 5th AIMAG.
Khatsü also informed that, for the first time, the United World Wrestling (UWW) has added belt wrestling and traditional wrestling in the official sports programme of the 5th AIMAG under the patronage of Olympic Council of Asia (OCA). The NTWFI is an associate member of UWW, which is recognized by International Olympic Committee (IOC).“To take part in an international event is a big achievement,” said NWA Secretary Vekhozo and expressed hope that the wrestlers will win medals for the country.
Stating that belt wrestling would be introduced in 2020 Olympic, he informed that the said competition will become an event at the 2024 Olympic.
TNT News with inputs from Morung Express