Weekly FIVE!

Weekly FIVE! April 16, 2019

By Eric Olanowski

Discussing the European C'ship results, this week's Pan-American C'ships, and next week's Asian's C'ships. Also looking at the newly released Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games wrestling schedule. 

1. European Championships Wrap up in Bucharest 
The 2019 European Championships wrapped up on Sunday night in Bucharest, Romania, and it was the Russian Federation who claimed team titles in both freestyle and Greco-Roman, while Ukraine won the women’s wrestling team trophy. 

In freestyleThe Russian Federation trailed Azerbaijan by five points heading into the final day of wrestling but closed out the freestyle competition with two golds, two silvers, and four bronze medals to win the team title six points ahead of second place Turkey. 

Azerbaijan (145 points), Georgia (104 points), and Ukraine (80 points) rounded out the top-five in freestyle. 

In Greco-Roman, the Russian Federation repeated as European champions, winning five individual gold medals and having nine of ten wrestlers reach the podium. Russia finished 60 points ahead of second-place Turkey. 

Azerbaijan (76 points), Germany (72 points), and Georgia (72 points) finished third through fifth respectively. 

In women’s wrestling, Ukraine, who had a solo bronze medalist and finished last year’s Kaspiisk European Championships in seventh place, capped off their improbable run to a European team title on the backs of four individual women’s wrestling championship performances. 

Bulgaria (112 points), Turkey (98 points), Azerbaijan (96 points), and Russia (89 points) were the other top-five finishers respectively.  

Click HERE for the full #WrestleBucharest event hub. 

Canada's Erica WIEBE (CAN) is one of four Olympic champions wrestling at the 2019 Pan-American Championships. (Photo: Max Rose-Fyne)

2. Four Olympic Champions Make Up 2019 Pan American Championships Field
Six Olympic medalists, including four Olympic champions, highlight the field at the 2019 Senior Pan American Championships in Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 18-21. Each style has at least one Olympic champion in the field.  

Three of the four Olympic medalists in the men’s freestyle brackets come from USA, including 2012 champion Jordan BURROUGHS, 2016 champion Kyle SNYDER and 2016 bronze medalist J’den COX.

In women's wrestling, 2016 Olympic champion Erica WIEBE (CAN) will compete this week at 76kg, while Rio Greco-Roman Olympic champion and five-time Pan American champion Ismael BORRERO MOLINA (CUB) at 67kg.

Click HERE for Taylor Miller's full Pan-American Championship preview. 

Japan's Kaori ICHO will be looking for her fifth women's wrestling Olympic gold medal. (Photo: Gabor Martin)

3. Women’s Wrestling at Center Stage as Tokyo 2020 Announces Detailed Competition Schedule
The Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Tokyo 2020) has announced the detailed competition schedule for the sport of wrestling at the 2020 Olympic Games. The two-day competition format will feature women’s wrestling as the final gold medal bout on each day of competition. 

Japan is the most dominant women’s wrestling nation in the world having won 11 of 18 Olympic gold medals since 2004, the first year the sport was included on the Olympic programme. The island nation has also won 22 world team titles since the first women’s wrestling world championships in 1987, including 11 of the last 13.

“The schedule announced by Tokyo 2020 will help wrestling ensure high attendance for each day of the competition,” said United World Wrestling president Nenad Lalovic. “We saw nice crowds in Brazil and expect that this schedule will help us reach even more fans and create a positive and energetic environment for all our competitors. The stars of women’s wrestling will guarantee that interest-level.”

Greco-Roman will join women for the first half of the schedule, with freestyle set to wrap up the Games alongside the aforementioned women’s weight categories.

Click HERE for Tim Foley's breakdown of the full Olympic schedule. 

4. Kayaalp, Bisultanov, and Ciobanu Make History at European Championships 
Turkey’s Riza KAYAALP authored a new page in the Turkish wrestling history books on Saturday night by winning his ninth European title. Kayaalp entered the night tied with Hamza YERLIKAYA, who also had eight European titles, but surpassed Yerlikaya with his Day 6 win at the Polyvalent Hall in Bucharest, Romania.

In his 130kg Greco-Roman gold-medal bout, Kayaalp scored three points from a stepout and a takedown to defeat Iakobi KAJAIA (GEO), 3-0.

Moldova’s Victor Ciobanu and Denmark’s Rajbek Bisultanov reached the top of the European championship podium and made history for their countries on the closing day of the wrestling in Bucharest.

In the 60kg Greco-Roman finals, Victor Ciobanu pulled off perhaps the biggest upset of these European Championships, defeating the defending world and European champion Sergey EMELIN (RUS), 5-5, on criteria, and became the first-ever Moldovan Greco-Roman European champion.  

In the 82kg Greco-Roman finals, Rajbek Bisultanov ended Denmark’s 93-year drought without a European gold medal, becoming the first wrestler from his nation to circle the mat with a Danish flag since Johannes JACOBSEN did so at the Riga European title in 1926. 

Bisultanov fell behind 1-0 to Georgia’s Lasha GOBADZE (GEO) but scored two exposure points and a takedown, ending the opening frame with a 4-1 lead. In the closing period, the Danish wrestler was dinged for a caution-and-two but held on to win 4-3.


China's No. 1-ranked RONG Ningning will be one of two returning world champs competing at this year's Asian Championships. (Photo: Max Rose-Fyne) 

5. Asian Championships Kick off Next Week in Xi'an, China 
Xi’an's Electronic Science and Technology University Gymnasium will be the host site for this year's Asian Championships, which take place in Xi'an, China from March 23-28. 

In total, 19 returning medalists from last year's world championships will be in action. 

Women's wrestling leads the way with ten returning podium finishers. They'll have two champions, one silver, and seven returning bronze competing. 

Greco-Roman will have one returning finalist and five bronze medalists, while freestyle has a pair of 2018 runner-ups and two bronze-medal finishers taking the mat in China next week. 

All the action can be followed live on www.unitedworldwrestling.org. 

SCHEDULE
Monday (March 22) 
17:00 - Draw FS – 57-65-70-79-97kg

Tuesday (March 23) 
9:30 - Medical examination and Weigh-in FS – 57-65-70-779-97kg
11:30 - Qualification rounds and repechage FS – 57-65-70-79-97kg
14:45 - Draw FS – 61-74-86-92-125kg
17:30 - Opening ceremony
18:00 - Finals FS – 57-65-70-79-97kg
18:00 - Award ceremonies 

Wednesday (March 24) 
9:30 - Medical examination and Weigh-in FS – 61-74-86-92-125kg 
11:30 - Qualification rounds and repechage FS – 61-74-86-92-125kg
14:45 - Draw WW – 50-55-59-68-76kg
18:00 - Finals FS – 61-74-86-92-125kg
18:00 - Award ceremonies / Cérémonies protocolaires

Thursday (March 25) 
9:30 - Medical examination and Weigh-in WW – 50-55-59-68-76kg 11:30 - Qualification rounds and repechage WW – 50-55-59-68-76kg
14:45 - Draw WW – 53-57-62-65-72kg
18:00 - Finals WW – 50-55-59-68-76kg
18:00 - Award ceremonies

Friday (March 26) 
9:30 - Medical examination and Weigh-in WW – 53-57-62-65-72kg 11:30 - Qualification rounds and repechage WW – 53-57-62-65-72kg
14:45 - Draw GR – 55-63-77-87-130kg
18:00 - Finals WW – 53-57-62-65-72kg
Award ceremonies / Cérémonies protocolaires

Saturday (March 27) 
9:30 - Medical examination and Weigh-in GR – 55-63-77-87-130kg 
11:30 - Qualification rounds and repechage GR – 55-63-77-87-130kg
14:45 - Draw GR – 60-67-72-82-97kg
18:00 - Finals GR – 55-63-77-87-130kg
Award ceremonies 

Sunday (March 28) 
9:30 - Medical examination and Weigh-in GR – 60-67-72-82-97kg
11:30 - Qualification rounds and repechage GR – 60-67-72-82-97kg 
18:00 - Finals matches GR – 60-67-72-82-97kg Award ceremonies 

Weekly FIVE! In Social Media 

1. Greco-Roman highlights from the European Championships 🔥😲 // Head over to our stories for the full video . .
2. Big Move(s) From Day 7 // #WrestleBucharest
3. Big Move From Day 6 // #WrestleBucharest
4. 🇦🇲 @maxim_manukyan 🇦🇲 🖐️ ➡ 📍
5. Big Move From Day 3 // #WrestleBucharest

Weekly FIVE!

Weekly FIVE! July 23, 2019

By Eric Olanowski

Discussing the Oleg Karavaev, German Grand Prix and the Cadet World Championships. Also looking wrestle-off news surrounding Russia and Japan. 

1. Oleg Karavaev Begins Friday
The top-four freestyle and women's wrestling world championship seeds are cemented, and after this weekend, the top-four Greco-Roman seeds will be, too. The regular season closes out this weekend with the final Greco-Roman Ranking Series event, the Oleg Karavaev. The two-day tournament, which will be in Minsk, Belarus, will feature 175 wrestlers from 19 different nations.

Leading the nearly 200-man field is Emrah KUS (TUR), the reigning world runner-up and No. 1-ranked wrestler in the world at 82kg. Kus leads an entry list littered with 24 wrestlers who are ranked inside the top-20 of the latest Greco-Roman rankings. 

Kus' weight of 82kg will feature six ranked wrestlers -- which is the most top-20 guys in one bracket. A pair of other stacked weight classes to pay close attention to are 67kg and 130kg. Both of these weight classes house at least four top-20 competitors.

ENTRIES: Click Here for full entries. 

2. Cadet World Championships Start This Upcoming Monday 
It’s officially world championship season! The 2019 Cadet World Championships begin in less than one week in Sofia, Bulgaria. 

The first set of brackets will come out on Sunday night, but freestyle action kicks off on Monday. Women’s wrestling takes over center stage on Wednesday, and Greco-Roman closes out the first World Championships of the year beginning on Friday. 

Here is the full schedule for the Cadet World Championships.

Nanami IRIE joined her sister on Japan's world team after she defeated Haruna OKUNO 3-1. (Photo: Sachiko Hotaka)

3. Japan’s World Team Set 
After what felt like months of wrestle-offs, Japan has their world team set after the conclusion of the non-Olympic weight wrestle-offs which took place in Tokyo last weekend. 

For the second time in two weeks, a reigning world champion was knocked off Japan's team to this year's World Championships. And for the second time, the conqueror was a wrestler named Irie.

Nanami IRIE earned a place alongside older sister Yuki on the plane to Kazakhstan when she defeated Haruna OKUNO 3-1 in a playoff for the women's 55kg berth on the Japanese squad.

Irie, a former world junior and cadet champion, scored a takedown off a counter early in the second period and held on to beat Okuno, the 2018 world champion at 53kg who missed out on the world team in that weight class.

Meanwhile, Rio 2016 silver medalist Shinobu OTA showed he could handle the extra weight at Greco 63kg when he crushed national champion Yoshiki YAMADA by 11-0 technical fall as he eyes winning his first senior world medal.

Japan National Team
Freestyle
57kg - Yuki TAKAHASHI
61kg -Kaiki YAMAGUCHI
65kg- Takuto OTOGURO
70kg - Kojiro SHIGA
74kg- Mao OKUI
79kg- Yudai TAKAHASHI
86kg- Sosuke TAKATANI
92kg -Tkuma OTSU
97kg -Naoya AKAGUMA
125 kg - Nobuyoshi ARAKIDA

Greco-Roman
55kg - Shota OGAWA
60kg - Kenichiro FUMITA
63kg - Shinobu OTA
67kg -  Shogo TAKAHASHI
72kg - Tomohiro INOUE
77kg - Shohei YABIKU
82kg - Yuya OKAJIMA
87kg - Masato SUMI
97kg - Yuta NARA
130kg - Arata SONODA

Women's Wrestling
50kg - Yuki IRIE
53kg - Mayu MUKAIDA
55kg - Nanami IRIE
57kg - Risako KAWAI
59kg - Yuzuka INAGAKI
62kg - Yukako KAWAI
65kg - Naomi RUIKE
68kg - Sara DOSHO
72kg - Masako FURUICHI
76kg - Hiroe MINAGAWA

Click here to read Ken Marantz' full wrap of the non-Olympic weight wrestle-offs. 

Reigning 74kg world champion Zaurbek SIDAKOV will have to outplace 2016 world champion Magomed KURBANALIEV at the Poland Open in order to make Russia's Nur-Sultan world team. (Photo: Gabor Martin) 

4. Russia's 86kg Wrestle-Off Scheduled for Poland Open 
Next week’s Ziolkowski - Pytlasinski Tournament in Warsaw, Poland will double up as the host site for the Russian Federation’s special wrestle-offs at 86kg between Dauren KURUGLIEV and Artur NAIFONOV. 

Kurugliev, the European Games champion, was released from the Russian National Championships where Naifonov, the 2018 European champion, was the winner of the 86kg bracket. The other weights that were excused from the National Championships were 57kg, 65kg, 74kg, 97kg and 125kg. But, those weights will not be contested at the Poland Open. 

The standard in years past at these special wrestle-offs has been that the highest placer at each weight will go on to represent Russia at their respective weight at the World Championships. That is expected to be the case again at 86kg. After the conclusion of the Poland Open and the final five wrestle-offs, the Russian coaching staff will announce their Nur-Sultan world team representatives in late-August.

Remaining Wrestle-Offs 
57kg - Zaur UGUEV vs. Ramiz GAMZATOV or Aryian TYUTRIN
65kg - Akhmed CHAKAEV vs. Gadzhimurad RASHIDOV
74kg - Zaurbek SIDAKOV vs. Magomed KURBANALIEV
97kg - Abdulrashid SADULAEV vs. Vladislav BAITSAEV
125kg - ANZOR KHIZRIEV vs. Alan KHUGAEV

Three-time world champion Frank STAEBLER (GER) will be making his first appearance down at 67kg at next weekend's German Grand Prix. (Photo: Max Rose-Fyne)

5. Staebler Makes 67kg Return, Four World or Olympic Champions to Compete at German GP 
Germany’s three-time world champion Frank STAEBLER will be making his first appearance down to 67kg next weekend at the 36th Annual German Grand Prix in Dortmund, Germany (August 3-4). 

Stebler, the reigning 72kg world champion, is dropping down to 67kg in preparation for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games where he’s eyeing his first Olympic medal. The German Grand Prix will be the first time Staebler has competed down at 67kg (previously 66kg) since taking seventh place at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. He'll be looking to win his fourth career German GP title, but first since 2016. He didn’t compete in the tournament in 2017 but fell to Toni OJALA (FIN) in last year’s finals. 

The German Grand Prix is also set to feature four Olympic medalists and two other reigning world champions. 

Olympic champions Roman VLASOV (RUS) and Davit CHAKVETADZE (RUS) will compete at 77kg and 87kg, respectively, while Rio bronze Stig Andre BERGE (NOR) and London runner-up Heiki NABI (EST) will take part in the tournament at 60kg and 130kg, respectively. 

In addition to all the Olympic medalists in action, returning world champions Artem SURKOV (RUS) and Musa EVLOEV (RUS) will take the mat in Germany, too. 

Surkov will compete at 67kg, where he’s the reigning world champion. Evloev will also compete at the weight where he’s the reigning world champion, 97kg. 

ENTRIES: https://www.ringen.de/

Weekly FIVE! In Social Media 

1. Big Move Monday -- @snyderman45 -- Yasar Dogu Ranking Series 2019
2. Here are the final top-four rankings heading into the #WrestleNurSultan World Championships. Who are your 🔒 to win a world🥇in Kazakhstan 🇰🇿? 
3. United World Wrestling Joins World Taekwondo for Historic Event at Azraq Refugee Camp.
4. Instead of a #THROWBackThursday, lets throw it forward to the the 2050 European Championships!
5. Are you coming to support your wrestlers in #WrestleNurSultan? Buy your tickets!