The participation of a Ukrainian or an Iranian athlete may not be a familiar trend in the Commonwealth Games, but it is happening, in wrestling, quite notably.
Acknowledged as the two most powerful nations in the Games, Australia and England, have come to Delhi with plenty of ‘imported' wrestlers in order to make their presence felt in the mega event.
The Australian side is heavily dependent on the grapplers who have migrated Down Under. Thus, you have 74kg freestyle grappler Kostya Ermakovich, born in Tashkent, while Hassene Fkiri, who was disqualified in the 96kg Greco Roman final on the ground of indiscipline and sought apology later, comes from Tunisia.
According to the Australian Games handbook, newly-crowned Greco Roman 120kg champion Ivan Popov was born in Omsk (Russia), while four others — Masoud Sadegh Pour (60kg GR), Hassan Shahsavan (74kg GR), Farzad Tarash (60kg FS) and Mehrdad Tarash (66kg FS) — belonged to Iran.
Among the women, 51kg wrestler Kyla Bremmer's birth place was Powell River in Canada, while Louise Randle (63kg, FS) was born in England.
The England squad is also rich with ‘foreigners.' Jagroop Singh (84kg FS), a wrestler of Indian origin from Canada, has migrated to nurture his career under the English flag. Sasha Madyarchyk (60kg FS) and current 66kg Greco Roman champion Myroslav Dykun were Ukrainian by birth.
Other wrestlers who have migrated to England are Terence Bosson (60kg GR) of South Africa, Mohammed Osman (84kg GR) of Iraq.
So far, the move of fielding migrated wrestlers in Games has paid dividends for the two countries.
Keywords: Commonwealth Games 2010