Rotter Focken Delivers in Final Women's Match in Belgrade

By Andrew Hipps

Finals Highlights
Day 5 Photos
Interview with Anastasia NICHITA (MDA)

BELGRADE, Serbia (December 16) -- On Wednesday night, Aline ROTTER FOCKEN (GER) delivered in a big way in the final women's wrestling match of the Individual World Cup in Belgrade, Serbia.

The 29-year-old German secured the gold medal at 76kg with a fall over 2017 world champion Yasemin ADAR (TUR).

Rotter Focken, a 2014 world champion and four-time world medalist, led 1-0 at the break after a tactical opening period. Early in the second period, Adar, who defeated Olympic champion Erica WIEBE (CAN) by fall in the semifinals, fired off a double leg. Rotter Focken defended the shot and whipped the Turkish wrestler to her back to secure the fall.

Russia claimed the team title in women's wrestling, finishing with seven medals, including two gold medals. A day after Ekaterina POLESHCHUK (50kg) won gold, Svetlana LIPATOVA gave Russia its second gold in women's wrestling by edging Mariana CHERDIVARA ESANU (MDA) 2-1 at 59kg.

Svetlana LIPATOVA (RUS) gave Russia its second gold in women's wrestling at the Individual World Cup (Photo: Gabor MARTIN, UWW)

After Lipatova scored the only point of the opening period off the activity clock, Cherdivara Esanu came back to take the criteria lead in the second period after scoring a point of her own off the activity clock. A short time later, the Moldovan wrestler was put on the activity clock for a second time. She was unable to score, giving Lipatova her lead back, which was enough to earn the narrow victory.

Anastasia NICHITA (MDA) won the title at 57kg (Photo: Gabor MARTIN, UWW)

Three Moldovan women competed for gold on Wednesday, but only European champion Anastasia NICHITA (57kg) came out victorious. 

Nichita earned the gold medal at 57kg with a 5-1 victory over world No.7 Anshu ANSHU (IND). Nichita led 1-0 at the break. She tacked on more points in the second period, scoring a two-point exposure with a throw before adding a takedown midway through the final period.

Tetiana RIZHKO (UKR) throws Irina RINGACI (MDA) for four points (Photo: Gabor MARTIN, UWW)

Tetiana RIZHKO (UKR), a 2018 junior world bronze medalist, used a big second period to help her earn a 14-4 technical superiority over Irina RINGACI (MDA) and capture the gold medal at 65kg. Rizhko went up 4-0 early before Ringaci responded with a takedown and gut wrench to grab the criteria lead heading into the break. Rizhko came out strong in the second period, throwing Ringaci to her back and nearly securing the fall. The Ukrainian built her lead to 8-4 before tossing Ringaci again to her back for four points to go up 12-4. She closed out the match by getting a takedown with 25 seconds remaining. 

Meerim ZHUMANAZAROVA (KGZ) topped Adela HANZLICKOVA (CZE) to win gold at 68kg (Photo: Gabor MARTIN, UWW)

Meerim ZHUMANAZAROVA (KGZ), a junior world silver medalist, overcame a slow start to defeat Adela HANZLICKOVA (CZE) 8-2 and claim the gold at 68kg. Hanzlickova, a 2020 Yasar Dogu champion, led 1-0 at the break after scoring off the activity clock. The 21-year-old Zhumanazarova quickly took the lead in the second period after shooting a double leg and scoring the match's first takedown. She added to her lead with another takedown before Hanzlickova scored a point off a step out to cut the deficit to 4-2. With less than 20 seconds remaining, Zhumanazarova shot a double leg and scored a four-point takedown to blow the match wide open.

Both Russia and Ukraine finished the day with one gold medal and two bronze medals.

Veronika CHUMIKOVA (57kg) and Khanum VELIEVA (68kg) won bronze medals for Russia, while Kateryna ZELENYKH (59kg) and Alina BEREZHNA STADNIK MAKHYNIA (68kg) earned bronze for Ukraine. 

Elis MANOLOVA (AZE) and Mimi HRISTOVA (BUL) took the bronze medals at 65kg. 

Mehlika OZTURK (TUR) won a bronze at 57kg after getting a fall over Arianna CARIERI (ITA).

Magdalena GLODEK (POL) edged Sandra PARUSZEWSKI (GER) to win a bronze medal at 59kg.

Vasilisa MARZALIUK (BLR) defeated the Rio Olympic champion Wiebe to win a bronze at 76kg. The other bronze at 76kg was won by Aiperi MEDET KYZY (KGZ).

Women's Wrestling Medal Match Results

GOLD: Anastasia NICHITA (MDA) df. Anshu ANSHU (IND) by VPO1, 5-1
BRONZE: Veronika CHUMIKOVA (RUS) df. Alyona KOLESNIK (AZE) by VPO1, 2-2
BRONZE: Mehlika OZTURK (TUR) df. Arianna CARIERI (ITA) by VFA, 5-0

GOLD: Svetlana LIPATOVA (RUS) df. Mariana CHERDIVARA ESANU (MDA) by VPO1, 2-1
BRONZE: Kateryna ZELENYKH (UKR) df. Elif YANIK (TUR) by VSU, 10-0
BRONZE: Magdalena GLODEK (POL) df. Sandra PARUSZEWSKI (GER) by VPO1, 8-7

GOLD: Tetiana RIZHKO (UKR) df. Irina RINGACI (MDA) by VSU1, 14-4
BRONZE: Elis MANOLOVA (AZE) df. Asli DEMIR (TUR) by VPO, 4-0

BRONZE: Khanum VELIEVA (RUS) df. Sofiya Hristova GEORGIEVA (BUL) by VSU1, 13-2

GOLD: Aline ROTTER FOCKEN (GER) df. Yasemin ADAR (TUR) by VFA, 3-0
BRONZE: Vasilisa MARZALIUK (BLR) df. Erica Elizabeth WIEBE (CAN) by VPO1, 3-1
BRONZE: Aiperi MEDET KYZY (KGZ) df. Ekaterina BUKINA (RUS) by VPO1, 11-8


Russia Closes Out Dominant Performance in Belgrade with 4 More FS Gold Medals

By United World Wrestling Press

Finals Highlights
Day 7 Photos
Interview with Vazgen TEVANYAN (ARM)

BELGRADE, Serbia (December 18) -- Russia made a triumphant return to the international wrestling stage with a dominant performance at the 2020 Individual World Cup in Belgrade, Serbia. 

A day after winning four freestyle gold medals, Russia bagged four more freestyle gold medals on Friday to finish with eight of the ten freestyle gold medals. The eight gold medals put Russia firmly atop the freestyle team standings. Turkey finished in second place, 106 points behind Russia. 

Russia concluded the Individual World Cup with 24 medals overall, including 17 gold medals.  

Abasgadzhi MAGOMEDOV (61kg), Akhmed USMANOV (79kg), Dauren KURUGLIEV (86kg) and Abdulrashid SADULAEV (97kg) added to Russia's gold medal tally on the event's final day. 

Magomedov, a 2018 junior world champion, was the first Russian to compete for gold on Friday. He picked up a 5-1 over 2016 world bronze medalist Akhmednabi GVARZATILOV (AZE) in the 61kg final. Magomedov scored a takedown in each of the two periods, while holding the Azerbaijani wrestler to a single point off a reversal.

Akhmed USMANOV (RUS) gets a turn in the 79kg final (Photo: Gabor MARTIN, UWW)

Usmanov, a 2016 junior world silver medalist, cruised to an 11-0 technical superiority over Muhammet KOTANOGLU (TUR) in the 79kg final. The Russian scored an early takedown off a single leg before turning Kotanoglu twice to go up 6-0. Kotanoglu attempted a throw early in the second period, which Usmanov countered, scoring two points before turning the Turkish wrestler to close out the technical superiority.

Dauren KURUGLIEV (RUS) won the gold at 86kg (Photo: Kadir CALISKAN, UWW)

The 2017 European champion Kurugliev controlled Zbigniew BARANOWSKI (POL) 5-1 in the 86kg final. Kurugliev fired off a double leg in the first 10 seconds of the match and secured a takedown to go up 2-0. He extended his lead to 3-0 early in the second period after getting a step out. A short time later, Kurugliev was hit with a caution, giving Baranowski his first point. The score stayed 3-1 in favor of the Russian until the final 30 seconds when Baranowski attempted a shot, which Kurugliev countered for a takedown. 

Olympic champ Abdulrashid SADULAEV (RUS) finished on top at 97kg (Photo: Gabor MARTIN, UWW)

Sadulaev, a Rio Olympic champion and four-time world champion, won by injury default as Aliaksandr HUSHTYN (BLR) was unable to compete in the 97kg final. The Russian Tank outscored his opponents 32-3 in Belgrade. 

Vazgen TEVANYAN (ARM) celebrates after winning the gold medal at 65kg (Photo: Kadir CALISKAN, UWW)

Vazgen TEVANYAN (ARM), a 2019 U23 European champion, captured gold at 65kg with a 9-1 win over 2019 world bronze medalist Iszmail MUSZUKAJEV (HUN). The Armenian used a late surge to help him earn the victory. The two wrestlers traded passivity points, with Muszukajev scoring the second one in the final period to take the lead on criteria. With under a minute remaining, Tevanyan fired off a shot to Muszukajev's left leg and secured a takedown to go up 3-1. He then locked up a gut wrench and turned Muszukajev three times to earn a decisive victory.

The bronze medals at 61kg went to Agustin DESTRIBATS (ARG) and Georgi VANGELOV (BUL). The 23-year-old Destribats, who already qualified for the Tokyo Olympics at 65kg, looked impressive in earning a 5-2 win over Razmik PAPIKYAN (ARM). Vangelov, a 2020 Yasar Dogu gold medalist at 57kg, scored late to edge Muhamad IKROMOV (TJK), 9-8.

Three-time world champion Haji ALIYEV (AZE) rebounded from a semifinal loss to Muszukajev to earn a bronze at 65kg with a 10-4 victory over Ilman MUKHTAROV (FRA). Hor OHANNESIAN (UKR) won the other bronze at 65kg with a comfortable 7-1 win over Nicolai GRAHMEZ (MDA).

Mahamedkhabib KADZIMAHAMEDAU (BLR) made quick work of Baliyan GOURAV (IND) in the first bronze-medal match at 79kg, earning a 14-1 technical superiority in the first period. After going up 10-1, Kadzimahamedau finished the match with a four-point move. Vasyl MYKHAILOV (UKR) held on to beat Akhsarbek GULAEV (SVK) 4-3 in the other bronze-medal match at 79kg.

Piotr IANULOV (MDA) topped world No.2 Deepak PUNIA (IND) 4-1 to earn a bronze at 86kg. The other bronze medal at 86kg went to Osman GOCEN (TUR), who defeated Taimuraz FRIEV NASKIDAEVA (ESP) 11-8.

Ahmed BATAEV (BUL) gave Bulgaria its second freestyle medalist by defeating Shamil ZUBAIROV (AZE) 8-1 in the first 97kg bronze-medal match. Suleyman KARADENIZ (TUR) edged Valerii ANDRIITSEV (UKR) 2-1 to win the other bronze at 97kg.

Freestyle Medal Match Results

GOLD: Abasgadzhi MAGOMEDOV (RUS) df. Akhmednabi GVARZATILOV (AZE) by VPO1, 5-1
BRONZE: Georgi VANGELOV (BUL) df. Muhamad IKROMOV (TJK) by VPO1, 9-8
BRONZE: Agustin DESTRIBATS (ARG) df. Razmik PAPIKYAN (ARM) by VPO1, 5-2

GOLD: Vazgen TEVANYAN (ARM) df. Iszmail MUSZUKAJEV (HUN) by VPO1, 9-1
BRONZE: Haji ALIYEV (AZE) df. Ilman MUKHTAROV (FRA) by VPO1, 10-4

GOLD: Akhmed USMANOV (RUS) df. Muhammet Nuri KOTANOGLU (TUR) by VSU, 11-0
BRONZE: Vasyl MYKHAILOV (UKR) df. Akhsarbek GULAEV (SVK) by VPO1, 3-2
BRONZE: Mahamedkhabib KADZIMAHAMEDAU (BLR) df. Baliyan GOURAV (IND) by VSU1, 14-1

GOLD: Dauren KURUGLIEV (RUS) df. Zbigniew Mateusz BARANOWSKI (POL) by VPO1, 5-1
BRONZE: Osman GOCEN (TUR) df. Taimuraz FRIEV NASKIDAEVA (ESP) by VPO1, 11-8
BRONZE: Piotr IANULOV (MDA) df. Deepak PUNIA (IND) by VPO1, 4-1

GOLD: Abdulrashid SADULAEV (RUS) df. Aliaksandr HUSHTYN (BLR) by VIN, 0-0
BRONZE: Suleyman KARADENIZ (TUR) df. Valerii ANDRIITSEV (UKR) by VPO1, 2-1
BRONZE: Ahmed BATAEV (BUL) df. Shamil ZUBAIROV (AZE) by VPO1, 8-1