New Delhi: Double Olympic medallist wrestler Sushil Kumar has set his sights on the prestigious World Championships in the United States in September to start his preparations for next year's Rio Games in right earnest.
Sushil, who will skip next month's Asian Championships in Doha, today said that he would take part in some events in the run-up to the World Championships (September 7-12) in Las Vegas, which will also serve as a qualifying event for the 2016 Rio Olympics.
"Our federation took the decision that the juniors would be given the chance for exposure in the Asian Championships and so the seniors, including me, have not been named in the Indian team," Sushil told PTI at the sidelines of a grassroot football programme organised by India Youth Soccer Association here.
"I will definitely take part in the World Championships. I will take part in a few events before World Championships to be fully prepared for the top event," he added.
It is learnt that most of the top wrestlers, including another Olympic medallist Yogeshwar Dutt, have set their sights on the World Championships as they do not want injuries before any Olympic qualifying event. Next month's Asian Championships is not an Olympic qualifying event.
"Asian Championships is not an Olympic qualifying event and so the top wrestlers do not want to take part in it because you never know they may pick up an injury. Olympics is the ultimate for any athlete, they want to qualify for it and once you are injured you never know when you will be in the best of your shape," a wrestling coach said.
Sushil has not taken part in any international event, after winning a gold in 74kg freestyle in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.