Deuces Wild - Iran, Ukraine, U.S. Pairs Advance to GR Finals at Jr World Wrestling C'ships

By William May

TAMPERE, Finland (August 5) – Iran, Ukraine and the United States each advanced a pair of wrestlers to the gold medal finals Saturday as the Greco-Roman events got under way at the Junior Wrestling World Championships.

Asian junior champion Poya DAD MARZ (IRI) and silver medalist at 60kg Keramat ABDEVALI (IRI) led the charge for Iran at the two lightest weight categories at Tampere Exhibition and Sport Center.

The Iranian pair will take on opponents from the U.S. and Ukraine in their respective gold medal matches, while Schultz Memorial winner Kamal BEY (USA) and two-time European junior bronze medalist Vladen KOZLIUK (UKR) will close out the first day of wrestling in the classic style at the championships.

Dad Marz defeated European silver medalist Zulfigar ALIYEV (AZE), 6-2, in the quarterfinals on his way to the gold medal match at 50kg, where he will meet Cevion SEVERADO (USA).

Severado, a cadet Pan American bronze medal winner last year, defeated Kensuke SHIMIZU (JPN), 8-5, in the semifinals after the former world cadet team member for Japan stunned defending world champion Vladislav MELNIKOV (RUS), 18-10, in the quarterfinals.

At 60kg, Abdevali defeated another Asian rival Manish MANISH (IND), 3-1, in the semifinals after former Asian junior bronze medal winner upset the reigning Asian champion Saidullah TAZAEV (TKM), 8-5, in the round of 16.

Abdevali will face former world cadet champion Aleksander HRUSHYN (UKR) in the gold medel round after the 2016 European junior bronze medalist edged Taishi NARIKUNI (JPN), 4-3, in the quarterfinals. Narikuni defeated reigning European champion Leri ABULADZE (GEO), 13-7, in the preliminaries.

At 74kg, Bey advanced to the final after posting a 19-7 technical fall – capping the bout with a five-point throw at 3:09 – over Per OLOFSSON (SWE).

Olofsson, only a 10th-place finisher at the European meet in June, stopped Asian silver medalist Jalgasbay BERDIMURATOV (UZB), 7-2, in the quarterfinals.

Bey will be seeking his first major victory away from home – where he has has won the Bill Farrell and Dave Schultz memorial events – when he steps onto the mat opposite Asian junior champion Akzhol MAKHMUDOV (KGZ).

In the evening’s finale at 96kg, Kozliuk takes on 2015 cadet world champion Artur SARGSIAN (RUS) after pinning Michail IOSIFIDIS (GRE) in the semifinals. Sargsian defeated European champ Arvi SAVOLAINEN (FIN), 5-2, in the quarterfinals. Local favorite Savolainen will wrestle for one of the bronze medals.

Medal Pairings & Semifinal Results


50kg (17 entries)
Gold – Cevion SEVERADO (USA) v Poya DAD MARZ (IRI) 
Bronze – Maksym VYSOTSKYI (ISR) v Kensuke SHIMIZU (JPN)
Bronze – ZHANG Haifeng (CHN) v Ilkhom BAKHROMOV (UZB)

Semifinal – Cevion SEVERADO (USA) df. Kensuke SHIMIZU (JPN), 8-5 
Semifinal – Poya DAD MARZ (IRI) df. Ilkhom BAKHROMOV (UZB), 7-5

60kg (28 entries)
Gold – Oleksander HRUSHYN (UKR) v Keramat ABDEVALI (IRI)
Bronze – Magomed MAGOMEDOV (RUS) v Taylor LAMONT (USA)
Bronze – Hassan Hassan Ahmed MOHAMED (EGY) v Manish MANISH (IND)

Semifinal – Oleksander HRUSHYN (UKR) df. Taylor LAMONT (USA), 6-1 
Semifinal – Keramat ABDEVALI (IRI) df. Manish MANISH (IND), 3-1

74kg (32 entries)
Gold – Akzhol MAKHMUDOV (KGZ) v Kamal BEY (USA)
Bronze – Sajan SAJAN (IND) v Ali Osman ERBAY (TUR)
Bronze – Nasir HASANOV (AZE) v Per OLOFSSON (SWE)

Semifinal – Akzhol MAKHMUDOV (KGZ) df. Ali Osman ERBAY (TUR), 7-1
Semifinal – Kamal BEY (USA) df.  Per OLOFSSON (SWE) by TF, 19-7, 3:09

96kg (26 entries)
Gold – Vladen KOZLIUK (UKR) v Artur SARGSIAN (RUS)
Bronze – Jan ZIRN (GER) v Michail IOSIFIDIS (GRE)
Bronze – Arvi SAVOLAINEN (FIN) v Suleyman ERBAY (TUR)

Semifinal – Vladen KOZLIUK (UKR) df. Michail IOSIFIDIS (GRE) by Fall, 0:30 (4-0)
Semifinal – Artur SARGSIAN (RUS) df. Suleyman ERBAY (TUR) by TF, 9-0, 0:35