Kurbanaliev Wins Battle of 2013 Bronze Medalists to Advance to World Finals

By William May

BUDAPEST (December 11) – Magomed KURBANALIEV (RUS) won the battle of Budapest 2013 bronze medalists Sunday to advance to his first world championship final at Syma Csarnok event center.

Kurbanaliev, who took a bronze medal at 65kg in the 2013 world meet -- also held in Budapest -- scored takedowns on both sides of the intermission to defeat Rashid KURBANOV (UZB), 4-1, the 70kg freestyle semifinal.

Kurbanaliev, a 2014 European champion, will take on Asian silver medalist Nurlan BEKZHANOV (KAZ) in the championship final at 70kg, while Kurbanov, a world bronze medal winner in 2013 at 74kg, squares off with Asia champion Moustafa HOSSEINKHANI (IRI).

In the first semifinal at 70kg, Bekzhanov overcame a six-point deficit in the first period to defeat Nobuyoshi TAKOJIMA (JPN), 10-6.

At 80kg in Greco-Roman, Ivan Poddubny tournament winner Ramazan ABACHARAEV (RUS) held on for a 1-1 victory over Golden Grand Prix Final titlist Rafik HUSEYNOV (AZE) in the quarterfinals and advanced to the championship final opposite GGP Final runner-up Aslan ATEM (TUR).

Atem, a bronze medal winner at the European championships in March, scored a go-behind takedown at 5:49 of the semifinals for a 5-5 victory on criteria over fellow European bronze medalist Laszlo SZABO (HUN).

At 60kg in women’s wrestling, two-time junior world bronze medalist Allison RAGAN (USA) opened with a 4-point throw in the semifinals and cruised to a 14-4 technical fall over Ayaulym KASSYMOVA (KAZ) into her first gold medal final at the world championships.

Ragan will meet junior world bronze medalist PEI Xingru (CHN), who will be seeking to become China’s first world champion since 2013.

Pei raced out to a five-point lead in the first period of her semifinal pairing with 2014 Asian junior champion Yui SAKANO (JPN) and held on for an 8-6 victory.

Pei also defeated 2013 world bronze medalist Emese BARKA (HUN), 8-4, in the quarterfinals. Barka will try for her second world championships bronze medal against Sakano in the evening session.

Semifinal results and pairings for Sunday evening’s medal matches:

Freestyle 70kg (28 entries)

Bronze – Elaman DOGDURBEK UULU (KGZ) v Nobuyoshi TAKOJIMA (JPN)
Bronze – Moustafa HOSSEINKHANI (IRI) v Rashid KURBANOV (UZB)

Semifinal – Nurlan BEKZHANOV (KAZ) df. Nobuyoshi TAKOJIMA (JPN), 10-6
Semifinal – Magomed KURBANALIEV (RUS) df. Rashid KURBANOV (UZB), 4-3

Greco-Roman 80kg (27 entries)

Gold – Ramazan ABACHARAEV (RUS) v Aslan ATEM (TUR)
Bronze – Nikolozi KELASOV (GEO) v Jonibek OTABEKOV (UZB)
Bronze – Askhat DILMUKHAMEDOV v Laszlo SZABO (HUN)

Semifinal – Ramazan ABACHARAEV (RUS) df. Jonibek OTABEKOV (UZB), 6-0
Semifinal – Aslan ATEM (TUR) df. Laszlo SZABO (HUN), 5-5

Women’s Wrestling 60kg (19 entries)

Gold – PEI Xingru (CHN) v Allison RAGAN (USA)
Bronze – Emese BARKA (HUN) v Yui SAKANO (JPN)
Bronze – Linda MORAIS (CAN) v Ayaulym KASSYMOVA (KAZ)

Semifinal – PEI Xingru (CHN) df. Yui SAKANO (JPN), 8-6
Semifinal – Allison RAGAN (USA) df. Ayaulym KASSYMOVA (KAZ) by TF, 14-4, 4:28