Google celebrates Indian wrestling legend Gama Pehlwan with doodle





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Google presented a doodle Sunday to honor one of India’s most famous wrestlers — Gama Pehlwan.

The mustachioed Pehlwan, also known as the “The Great Gama,” is seen holding a mace over his right shoulder in the doodle created by guest artist Vrinda Zaveri to honor the 144th anniversary of Pehlwan’s birth.

It was made to celebrate Pehlwan’s “accomplishments in the ring but also the impact and representation he brought to Indian culture,” the company stated. 

The legend of Pehlwan is still talked about to this day. He went undefeated in more than 5,000 bouts in his five-decade wrestling career. Standing at 5-feet, 7 inches tall and weighing around 250 pounds, Pehlwan was the definition of a strongman. 

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His daily training regimen included 5,000 situps, 3,000 pushups and competing with more than 40 wrestlers, according to the Olympics website

Those training methods reportedly inspired martial arts legend Bruce Lee, according to a book by author John Little, “Bruce Lee: The Art of Expressing the Human Body.”

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Born in 1878, Pehlwan took part in a strongman competition in Rajasthan at the age of 10. He stole the show in front of 400 wrestlers and strongmen, placing among the top 15 and eventually being named the winner due to his age.

Indian wrestler Gama and American opponent Benjamin “Doc” Roller during a match at the Alhambra Theatre Aug. 8, 1910. Gama won the fight within two minutes. 
(Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

In 1895, he faced undisputed Indian wrestling champion Raheem Bakhsh Sultani Wala, who stood roughly 7 feet tall.  

Despite bleeding from his nose and ears, the 17-year-old Pehlwan held his own against the older and larger opponent, with both bouts ending in stalemates, the outlet reported. 

His legend also grew after he reportedly fought off armed mobs on occasion. In one instance, he slapped the leader so hard it prompted the mob to flee in fear. 

His career ended because prospective opponents refused to enter the ring against him. 

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Pehlwan died in 1960 at the age of 82. 






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