Portrait of a Pehlwani Wrestler: Varanasi

This is 25 year old Abhay from Bihar in India. His name means 'fearless' and he wants to be a professional Pehlwani wrestler. He gets up at five every morning to start his training with several hundred press ups. He then goes to the Akhara (wrestling school) to weight train and fight other students for the rest of the morning.

He is covered in a mixture of sand, oil and turmeric (which the wrestlers believe has healing properties). After training ends he bathes in the nearby Ganges.

This photo was taken after a training session at the Tulsi Gat Akhara in Varanasi.