The Wrestling Federation of India on Friday terminated the services of Deepak Punia’s Russian coach Murad Gaidarov after he had assaulted a referee during the Tokyo Olympics. The incident also led to his expulsion from the Games.

Punia lost his 86kg bronze play-off to San Marino’s Myles Nazim Amine on Thursday, after which Gaidarov went to the room of the referee, who had officiated in the bout, and assaulted him.

“Indian wrestling team’s foreign assistant coach Mr Murad Gaidarov who was involved in an uncalled incident of assault on one of the match referees, is being withdrawn from the Tokyo Olympic Village immediately and is being called back to India on the latest flight,” Indian Olympic Association Secretary General Rajeev Mehta stated.

The United World Wrestling, the world governing body of the game summoned the WFI for a disciplinary hearing, in which the national federation faced an embarrassing situation as a ban on them was being considered.

“We told them that the Indian coaches are well-behaved and although Gaidarov trains the Indian wrestler, his actions should not affect the WFI. We assured them that Gaidarov will be terminated immediately. We barely survived a ban,” WFI assistant secretary Vinod Tomar told PTI.

“Gaidarov is being sent back to India so that he can collect all his belongings. Then he will leave for his country,” Tomar added.

Gaidarov’s accreditation was cancelled after the hearing.

The Russian has been guiding Punia since last year after the WFI assigned him to train the 2018 junior world champion.

Gaidarov, 42, had won a silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, representing Belarus.

He was disqualified from the 2004 Olympic Games when he assaulted his opponent outside the arena after losing his quarterfinal bout.