Indian-Origin Wrestler to Represent Australia in Commonwealth Games
Rupinder Kaur Sandhu had represented Australia in the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow as well.
Indian-origin wrestler Rupinder Kaur Sandhu is among the eight grapplers — five men and three women — who will represent Australia in the Commonwealth Games to be held from April 4 at Gold Coast in the country, the Hindustan Times reported. Over 6,600 athletes and team officials from 70 nations and territories will converge for an 11-day event that is said to be biggest sporting event Gold Coast has seen in a decade, according to the Australian media.
Kaur, who was born and raised in Tarn Taran, Punjab, started her wrestling career in Harike Pattan. She started with judoka when she was in the 7th grade. “When I was in 11th grade, I developed a liking for a wrestling and played my first national a year later,” she told HT, adding that her father, who served in the Indian Army, was supportive of her choices.
Before moving to Australia in 2007 for her studies, Kaur had represented India in a competition in Turkey and bagged a gold. She also won a silver at the National Games in Hyderabad in 2004. “As I had a keen desire to improve my wrestling skills, I started looking for a club. I met an international player Kuldeep Bassi, who started training me,” she added.
Kaur started getting sponsored by Australian Wrestling Association in 2012. “The AWA sponsored me and through them, I got a permanent residency in sports category. After that I started competing at the international level and represented Australia at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014,” she was quoted as saying in the report.
She continued with wrestling after marriage in 2013, but had to stop for a year after the birth of her daughter in 2016. “I had a caesarean delivery and had to think twice before returning to the wrestling ring as I needed a fairly significant period of time to recover,” she told the publication.
She went on to win the gold medal in the 48 kg category in Australian National Championships in Sydney in 2017. In the 13th Commonwealth Championship held in Johannesburg from Dec. 13-17 last year, she clinched the bronze in 50 kg category.
Kaur, whose aim now is to win a gold at Gold Coast, says her two-year-old daughter is her inspiration.