U23 World C'ships

Greco Finals Set for Day One

By Taylor Miller

BYDGOSZCZ, Poland – The first four finals of the U23 World Championships are set in Greco-Roman at 71 kg, 75 kg, 85 kg and 130 kg in Bydgoszcz, Poland.

At 71 kg, 2016 Senior World silver medalist Daniel CATARAGA (MDA) will battle it out with Robert FRITSCH (HUN), who won the Grand Prix of Paris in January.

Cartaraga also competed at the World Championships in Paris, France, earlier this summer, where he finished fifth.

So far, Fritsch has only given up two points in the tournament. On his road to the finals, he defeated 2014 Cadet World champion Matias LIPASTI (FIN), 5-0.

2015 Junior World champion and 2014 Junior World bronze medalist Gela Bolkvadze (GEO) and 2017 Senior World fifth-place finisher Fatih CENGIZ (TUR) will headline the 75 kg weight class.

Bolkvadze won the 2016 U23 European Championships and took home silver at the event in 2017.

Cengiz has put together a solid performance, including knocking off 2016 Senior World champion Esen ASANOV (KGZ) with a 5-0 shutout. He also took out two-time Junior World medalist Akhmed KAYTSUKOV (RUS) and 2017 Junior World bronze and 2016 Cadet World silver Nasir HASANOV (AZE).

At 85 kg, Ivan HUKLEK (CRO), who competed at the World Championships in Paris, will face 2016 University World champion Erik SZILVASSY (HUN).

Rounding out the night is the 98 kg finals, which will pit 2017 Military World bronze medalist Matti KUOSMANEN (FIN) against 2017 Russian Championships silver medalist Aleksandr GOLOVIN (RUS).

Kuosmanen tallied a win over 2016 University World champion and 2017 U23 European bronze medalist Fatih BAKSOY (TUR), while Golovin defeated 2016 Junior World silver medalist Bopembe-Arsen SYCHEV (BLR).

The gold and bronze-medal finals are set for 6 p.m. local time (12 p.m. U.S. ET).

GOLD MEDAL MATCHES
71 kg: Daniel CATARAGA (MDA) vs. Robert FRITSCH (HUN)
75 kg: Gela BOLKVADZE (GEO) vs. Fatih CENGIZ (TUR)
85 kg: Ivan HUKLEK (CRO) vs. Erik SZILVASSY (HUN)
98 kg: Matti KUOSMANEN (FIN) vs. Aleksandr GOLOVIN (RUS)

BRONZE MEDAL MATCHES
98 kg
Bopembe Arsen SYCHEV (BLR) vs. Abudourexiti ALIMUJIANG (CHN)
Michail IOSIFIDIS (GRE) vs. Fatih BASKOY (TUR)

71 kg
Rinat AKHMEDOV (RUS) vs. Murat DAG (TUR)
Farshad Mirahmad BELFAKEH (IRI) vs. Riccardo Vito ABBRESCIA (ITA)

75 kg
Nasir HASANOV (AZE) vs. Esen Asanov (KGZ)
Miras BARSHYLYKOV (KAZ) vs. Payam Abdeh Saleh BOVEYRI PAYANI (IRI)

85 kg
Islam ABBASOV (AZE) vs. Gurami KHETSURIANI (GEO)
Ruslan MAHOMEDOV (UKR) vs. Toni Heikki Herman METSOMAEKI (FIN)