HomeArticlesRio OlympicsAvtar Singh: Judoka Paid His Own Way to Qualify for Rio

Avtar Singh: Judoka Paid His Own Way to Qualify for Rio

avtar singh

Avtar Singh (born 3 April 1992) is an Indian judoka who has qualified to compete at the 2016 Summer Olympics due to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Singh was born on 3 April 1992 in Gurdaspur, Punjab, India. Whilst growing up in Kothe Ghurala village he spent time working on his parents farm. He works as an assistant sub inspector for the Punjab Police.

He represented India at the 2014 Commonwealth Games held in Glasgow, Scotland. In the men’s middleweight event he was defeated by eventual silver medallist Matthew Purssey of Scotland in the round of 16.

Singh competed in just six events from 2015 until May 2016, with problems with the Indian Federation and with getting funding preventing him from travelling to tournaments. Before a Grand Prix event in Turkey in 2016 his parents gave him their life savings to allow him to pay for tickets to travel to Turkey. At the 2016 South Asian Games held in India, Singh took part in the 90 kg division. He defeated Sanjay Maharjan of Nepal and Md Jahangir Alam of Bangladesh to reach the final where he beat Mohammad Kakar of Afghanistan inside 49 seconds to win the gold medal. At the Asian Judo Championships held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan in April 2016, he reached the semifinals before losing to Tajikistan’sKomronshokh Ustopiriyon. He then defeated Saeed Moradi of Iran in the repcharge round before losing his final bout to Chinese judokaXunzhao Cheng to place fifth overall.

His results in 2016 allowed him to improve his world ranking from below 200th up to 79th, high enough for him to secure one of the Asian continental qualification quota places for the men’s 90 kg event at the 2016 Summer Olympics due to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

24-year-old Avtar Singh bagged the continental quota in the 90kg category of the event by virtue of his consistent praiseworthy performances that fetched 182 valuable points and put him ahead in contention for the coveted Olympic seat with a world ranking of 79. Like Garima Chaudhary in London 2012, Avtar will be the Indian judoka to feature in the Rio Games.

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