NEW DELHI: It was like home, away from home for Pakistani and Canadian wrestlers, who not only won gold in their wrestling bouts in the Commonwealth Games, but also an overwhelming support from the Indian crowd.
Canadian wrestler Arjan Singh Bhullar, who has his roots in India, was overwhelmed after winning the gold medal in the 120 kg freestyle at the K.D.Jadhav Indoor Stadium in the Indira Gandhi Sports Complex.
"My roots are in India and the feeling after winning the gold medal here is simply amazing. I had waited for many years for this day. My whole family from Canada had come to New Delhi to support me," the 24-year-old Arjan told IANS.
But Arjan perhaps did not need it. There was a lot more coming forth from the local spectators.
Talking about terrific crowd support, Arjan said: "Indian crowd is spectacular and I felt as if I was a part of these jubilant spectators. In fact, I could not stop myself from doing bhangra to the beats and tunes of Punjabi music that was playing around."
"They are not at all partial and supporting the wrestler of every country. This is an example of true sportsmanship and brotherhood," said Arjan, who is based in British Columbia in Canada.
Pakistan's 21-year-old wrestler Mohammad Inam, who won gold in the 84-kg category, said "This is the happiest moment of my life and it's really difficult to express this feeling in words."
"I am thankful to Indians for their support and hospitality. This is for the first time that I have come here to participate in a wrestling tournament. I will tell all my friends about this amazing experience and would like to come here again in future," said Inam, who hails from Gujranwala district in Pakistan's Punjab state.
Pakistan's wrestling coach Muhammad Amin told IANS that in India he feels like at home.
"There is no difference between India and Pakistan. The crowd is same and they are also equally enthusiastic like Pakistani people. Though Inam was fighting against an Indian wrestler but spectators were also cheering for him," said Amin.