Weekly FIVE!

Weekly FIVE! December 10, 2019

By Eric Olanowski

Reviewing the three Olympic champions who had winning weekends and Chamizo announcing that he'll compete at January's Matteo Pellicone in Rome. Also looking next week's All Japan Championships and U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier. 

1. Wiebe Outduels Di Stasio in Battle of Olympic vs. World Champion 
Erica WIEBE outdueled Justina DI STASIO in two straight matches at the Canadian Wrestling Trials, as two other Olympians cemented their spots on Canada’s Pan-American Qualifier team.

Wiebe, the 2016 Rio Olympic champion, scored back-to-back victories over 2018 world champion Justina Di Stasio in a best-of-three series and punched her ticket to the Pan-American Olympic Games Qualifier. The Olympic Qualifier is set to take place in her hometown of Ottawa on March 13-15. In her post-match interview, the Rio Olympic champion said, “It’s going to be different. I’ve never wrestled in my hometown of Ottawa, and a lot is on the line, and I’ll just do a lot of what I do every day – that is get one percent better.” 

In the first match, Wiebe scored an inactivity point and held the 1-0 advantage, but Di Stasio scored a takedown and grabbed the 2-1 lead. Wiebe responded in a champion way, scoring four unanswered points and took match one, 5-2. Then, in the second match, Weibe grabbed a pair of one-point exchanges and locked up her spot on Canada’s Pan-American Qualifier team with the 2-0 victory. 

Michelle FAZZARI and Danielle LAPPAGE, who represented Canada at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, also punched their ticket to the Pan-American Olympic Games Qualifier in Ottawa. 

Fazzari, who was returning from a horrific knee injury she suffered while wrestling Adeniyi OLUWAFUNMILAYO (NGR) in the 2018 Commonwealth Games finals, downed Jessica BROUILLETTE in two straight matches. She scored the 3-0 shutout win in the first match, then edged Brouillette, 3-2, in the second match. 

Lappage, the 2018 world runner-up, dropped her first match against three-time Pan-American medalist Olivia DI BACCO, but earned her spot to the Pan-American Olympic Games Qualifier after winning back-to-back matches. She won the second match, 9-0, and the third match, 4-2. 

Meanwhile, Linda MORAIS, the 59kg world champion, dropped down to the Olympic weight of 57kg and easily punched her ticket to Ottawa with a pair of falls over Hannah TAYLOR. 

RESULTS
Women’s Wrestling
50kg - Jessie MACDONALD df. Madison PARKS, two matches to none (7-2, 12-1)
53kg - Samantha STEWART df. Jade PARSONS, two matches to none (11-0, 2-2)
57kg - Linda MORAIS df. Hannah TAYLOR, two matches to none (via fall, via fall)
 62kg - Michelle FAZZARI df. Jessica BROUILLETTE, two matches to none (3-0, 3-2) 
68kg - Danielle LAPPAGE df. Olivia DI BACCO, two matches to one (5-8, 9-0, 4-2) 
76kg - Erica WIEBE df. Justina DI STASIO, two matches to none (5-2, 2-1)
 

Freestyle 
57kg - Ligrit SADIUKU df. Aso PALANI, two matches to one (3-4, 12-2, 4-1)
65kg - Dillon WILLIAMS df. Chris MCISAAC, two matches to none (5-2, 5-1)
74kg - Jasmit PHULKA df. Tyler ROWE, two matches to none (6-2, 6-5)
86kg - Clayton PYE df. Alex BROWN-THERIAULT, two matches to one (15-4, 2-9, 13-2)
97kg - Jordan STEEN df. Nishan RANDHAWA, two matches to none (13-2, 12-2)
125kg - Amar DHESI df. Korey JARVIS, two matches to none (11-0, 10-0)

2. Olympic Champs Ramonov and Snyder Win Alans International Tournament
Olympic champions Soslan RAMONOV (RUS) and Kyle SNYDER (USA) finished atop the podium at the Alans International Tournament in Vladikavkaz, Russia, as nine Russians claimed gold medals.

Ramonov, who has been wrestling at 70kg since 2017, returned to 65kg for the first time since his magical run to Olympic gold in Rio, and defeated Kurban SHIRAEV (RUS), 3-0, in the finals at 65kg. 

The Alans was Ramonov’s third tournament back since undergoing back surgery over a year ago. The Olympic champion finished in second place at the Akhmed Kadyrov Cup and third place at the Vladimir Semenov Tournament. 

Last November, Ramonov told United World Wrestling, “It’s true that I had an operation on my back last week, but I’ve already got back to work and started physical therapy.” Ramonov went on to say, “I expect to return to the mat in January, and hopefully enter a tournament at 65kg closer to the fall.” 

America’s Kyle Snyder was the second Olympic champion who won an Alans gold medal. To win his gold, “Captain America” used a takedown and three one-point maneuvers to move past 2018 European champion Vladislav BAITSAEV (RUS), 5-2, in the 97kg finals.

Meanwhile, Ahmed IDRISOV (RUS) and Khetik TSABOLOV (RUS) were also apart of Russia’s gold-medal winning cast. 

Idrisov, the younger brother of reigning world silver medalist Magomedrasul IDRISOV (RUS), scored a three-point win (5-2) over the two-time world bronze medalist ERDENEBAT Behbayar (MGL) in the 57kg finals.

Tsabolov, the 2014 world champion, defeated two-time world medalist James GREEN (USA), 7-4, in the 74kg finals. Up until the Alans, Tsabolov's finals opponent had competed down at 70kg for 20 consecutive tournaments and was making his first career appearance up at the Olympic weight class of 74kg.

In the finals, the Russian gave up an early takedown and trailed 2-0, but scored an inactivity point that was followed by a takedown and a pair of laces to win the match by three points. 

Freestyle
57kg - Ahmed IDRISOV (RUS) df. ERDENEBAT Behbayar (MGL), 5-2
61kg - Ramazan FERZALIEV (RUS) df. Abasgadzhi MAGOMEDOV (RUS), 10-7
65kg - Soslan RAMONOV (RUS) df. Kurban SHIRAEV (RUS), 3-0
70kg - Chermen VALIEV (RUS) df. Ramazan RAMAZANOV (RUS), 4-2
74kg - Khetik TSABOLOV (RUS) df. James GREEN (USA), 7-4
79kg - Khalil AMINOV (RUS) df. Kakhaber KHUBEZHTY (RUS), 8-6
86kg - Soslan KTSOEV (RUS) df. Georgy RUBAEV (MDA), 11-1
92kg - Magomed KURBANOV (RUS) df. Mohammad EBRAHIMI (IRI), 4-2
97kg - Kyle SNYDER (USA) df. Vladislav BAITSAEV (RUS), 5-2
125kg - Batraz GAZZAYEV (RUS) df. Baldan TSYZHIPOV (RUS), 10-0

Yui SUSAKI (JPN) will try to get back on Japan's women's wrestling team by winning next weekend's All Japan Championships. (Photo: Sachiko Hotaka)

3. All Japan Championships Begin Next Week in Tokyo 
Yui SUSAKI will join Rio Olympic silver medalists Shinobu OTA and Rei HIGUCHI next week on their quest to claim All Japan Championship gold and lock up their spots on Japan’s Asian Olympic Games Qualifier team. 

The winners of the All Japan Championships, which will take place at Tokyo’s Komazawa Gymnasium on December 19-22, and will travel to China in March with hopes of doing what their fellow Japanese teammates couldn’t do at the 2019 World Championships -- qualify their respective weight for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. 

Susaki, a two-time world champion, will be joined by career rival Yuki IRIE and Rio Olympic champion Erie TOSAKA in the 50kg bracket. Earlier this year, Susaki was stunned by Irie, which kept her from defending her world titles from 2017 and ’18. 

Meanwhile, Rio Olympic runner-ups Ota and Higuchi will be moving weight classes in preparations to improve their silver medals from 2016. 

Ota, this year’s 63kg world champion, will be moving up to 67kg. He planned on dropping down to 60kg, but Kenichiro FUMITA (JPN) not only won the world title, but he also locked up his seat on Japan’s Olympic team at the weight. So that left Ota with no choice but to go up to 67kg.

Next weekend, Ota will challenge defending national champion Shogo TAKAHASHI, defending national runner-up Tsuchika SHIMOYAMADA and last year’s U23 world champion Katsuaki ENDO, for the 67kg spot.

Rei HIGUCHI, who is dropping down to 57kg from 65kg, will have to get through Yuki TAKAHASHI if he has hopes of representing Japan in a second straight Olympics. The task won't be easy, as Takahashi has been one of the best wresters at the weight over the past three years. Higuchi's potential opponent was the world champion in 2017 and world bronze medalist in 2018. But after a disappointing 10th-place finish in Nur-Sultan, Takahashi left the door open for others to challenge, which is why Higuchi is making the change. 

For more information about the All Japan Championships, visit http://www.japan-wrestling.org.

View this post on Instagram

Talks Tokyo, Burroughs, Sidakov and injury recovery.

A post shared by Olympic Wrestling (@unitedworldwrestling) on

4. Chamizo Announces Plans to Compete at January’s Matteo Pellicone
In an interview with United World Wrestling, Italian superstar Frank CHAMIZO announced that he’ll wrestle at the first Ranking Series event of 2020, the Matteo Pellicone. “I’m going to Rome for the Ranking Series tournament. Right now, I’m training for there in New York,” said the two-time world champion. Chamizo went further, saying, “It will be good. It’s home!”

Chamizo has been one of the biggest supporters of UWW’s Ranking Series events. After winning a gold medal at the third Ranking Series tournament of the year, the Sassari City Tournament, Chamizo said, “I need the training and I need the matches. But the reason for competing so much is I need the Ranking Series points. That’s important.”

Chamizo has competed in four of the eight Ranking Series events since its inception in 2018 and has medaled in each of those four appearances. This year, Chamizo used the Ranking Series events to climb to the top of the world ranking, and ultimately the No. 1 seed at the World Championships, after collecting points at the European Championships, Dan Kolov, Sassari City Tournament and Yasar Dogu.   

With the Olympics seeding the top-four wrestlers at each weight for the first time ever, you can bet that Chamizo will again have his eye on the top seed, and his quest to grab that top seed kicks off at the Matteo Pellicone, which takes place January 15-18. 

Chamizo’s Ranking Series Resume
2018 
Yasar Dogu – gold 

2019 
Sassari – gold 
Yasar Dogu – silver 

Dan Kolov – bronze 

5. Fort Worth to Host U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier Next Week
The road to State College, Pennsylvania, for the Olympic Trials made its first stop in New York for the Bill Farrell Memorial and will make its second stop next weekend in Fort Worth, Texas, for the U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier. The Fort Worth Convention Center will host the two-day tournament from December 20-22.

According to USA Wrestling, “The Senior Freestyle top-5 finishers per weight category at the 2019 U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier will earn a spot in the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials,” which will take place in State College, Pennsylvania, on April 4-5.

Our friends at www.flowrestling.org have the streaming rights to the U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier. Wrestling kicks off at 11:00 (local time) on December 20. 

Selection Process for 2020 Toyko Olympic Games

Weekly FIVE! In Social Media

1. Big Move Monday -- El Sayed M. (EGY)
2. Top-10 Throws from 2019
3. Top-Five Scrambles from 2019
4. Who scored on this exchange?
5. #TBT - Semenov Smashes Coon, Giving Russia Sixth GR World Gold

View this post on Instagram

— #uww #unitedworldwrestling

A post shared by Olympic Wrestling (@unitedworldwrestling) on

Weekly FIVE!

Weekly FIVE! December 16, 2019

By Eric Olanowski

Discussing this week's All Japan Championships and U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier. Also looking at Amine winning San Marino’s Atleta Dell’Anno Athlete of the Year and recent modifications to the draw process and World Cup Events.

1. All Japan Championships (Emperors Cup) Begins Thursday
There’s no shortage of Japanese wrestling storylines for this week, as a star-studded cast of world and Olympic champions are set to take the mat at Tokyo’s Komazawa Gymnasium for the All-Japan Championships (also known as the Emperors Cup), which starts December 19-22. 

Among the list of all-stars that’ll be looking to win an Emperors Cup crown will be Sara DOSHO, Takuto OTOGURO, Shinobu OTA, Yui SUSAKI and Eri TOSAKA.

Dosho, the Rio Olympic champion, will have an uphill battle in booking her ticket to the Asian Olympic Qualifier, as she’ll be joined in the 68kg bracket by U23 world champions Masako FURUICHI and Yuka KAGAMI. 

Although 2017 world champion Otoguro punched Japan’s ticket to the Olympic Games at 65kg with a fifth-place finish in Nur-Sultan, he still needs to cement himself as the top guy in the country at the weight. He's the unquestionable favorite to win the weight.

Ota, this year’s 63kg world champion, will be wrestling up a weight at 67kg. He planned on dropping down to 60kg, but after Kenichiro FUMITA (JPN) won the 60kg world title, he locked up his seat on Japan’s Olympic team at the weight. This left Ota with no other choice than to move up to the Olympic weight of 67kg. In his debut up at 67kg, Ota will look to challenge defending national champion Shogo TAKAHASHI, defending national runner-up Tsuchika SHIMOYAMADA and last year’s U23 world champion Katsuaki ENDO, for the 67kg spot.

Yui Susaki, a two-time world champion and Olympic champion Eri Tosaka are both entered at 50kg. The pair of hammers will be joined by Yuki IRIE, who was Japan’s representative at the 2019 World Championships. 

The winners of each weight class will book their trip to Xi’an, China, for the Asian Olympic Qualifier, where they'll hope to qualify their respective weight classes for the Toyko Olympic Games.

The All Japan Championships can be followed on https://www.japan-wrestling.jp/2019/12/15/155990/.

2. Amine Named San Marino’s Athlete of the Year
Myles AMINE continues to have a life-defining year that he’ll surly never forget. Months after the 23-year-old became his nation's first-ever freestyle Olympian, Amine was named San Marino’s Atleta Dell’Anno Athlete of the Year. 

The award comes on the heels of Amine making San Marinian history at both the European Games and the World Championships. In June, Amine edged Alexander GOSTIYEV (AZE), 3-3, in the bronze-medal bout in Minsk and became the first wrestler from San Marino to win a medal at the European Games. Then, on the eighth day of wrestling in Nur-Sultan, Amine again made history for his nation when he advanced to the semifinals in the World Championships and clinched a spot at 86kg in the Tokyo Olympic Games. 

Amine ultimately went on to finish in fifth place at the World Championships. And as expected, since the World Championships, Amine has announced that he’ll, in fact, be the 86kg representative for San Marino come August at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

3. Wrestling Announces New Format for Senior World Cup Events
United World Wrestling has announced a change in the format for Senior World Cup events. 

Senior World Cup events will now be held in November or early December of non-Olympic years. The events will be contested over two days, Friday and Saturday.  

The numbers of teams competing in each style will be reduced from eight to six. The top five wrestling nations from the previous Senior World Championships in each style will qualify for the event. In addition to the five qualified countries, an All-Star team will be selected based on the highest ranked wrestlers from the previous Senior World Championships who compete for non-qualified countries. 

The proposal was made by the Technical Commission and approved by the Executive Committee.

"We fully expect this new format to appeal to more fans from across the world," said United World Wrestling president Nenad Lalovic. "The addition of an All-Star team is unique. We are excited to see their impact on the event."

National Wrestling Federations and cities to are expected provide bids in the coming months. More details will be released in the new year.

4. Wrestling Modifies Draw, Brings Blockchain to the Mats
United World Wrestling has announced the implementation of a new draw process for competitions that includes the use of Blockchain technology to ensure a certifiably random assignment of athletes into competition brackets. The system, a first in the Olympic movement, has been reviewed, approved and applauded by the International Olympic Committee.

"We are always striving to improve our operations and guarantee total transparency in our draw process," said United World Wrestling IT Director Sebastien Guenat. " I'm happy we can introduce Blockchain as it will save us time during the draw of weight categories and ensure absolute random assignments."

The draws themselves will now only occur once per style. In effect, the draws will mean that athletes, coaches, and fans will be able to see some brackets up to three days in advance of the competition.

"This is a major step forward for us because it allows coaches to know in advance the opponent of their wrestlers in order to adjust their preparation," said United World Wrestling Sports Director Jean-Daniel Rey. "The process is always under review and these changes signal that we are ready to adapt to the needs of our coaches, athletes, and fans."

Click here for United World Wrestling's full release about the new draw process.

Spencer LEE (USA), the three-time age-group world champion, will make his freestyle return for the first time since 2016. (Photo: Justin Hoch)

5. Three-time World Champ Lee to Make Return this Week at U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier 
America’s most credential age-group wrestler, Spencer LEE (USA), is set to make his freestyle return this weekend in Fort Worth, Texas, at the U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier. The three-time age-group world champion will return to freestyle action for the first time since he won his 2016 junior world title in Macon, France. 

Lee’s return comes at a much-needed weight class for the United States where they have yet to qualify a spot for the Olympic Games, 57kg. Their Nur-Sultan representative Daton FIX (USA) dropped to a 12th place finish at the World Championships, which was the lowest finish at the weight for the Stars and Stripes since the 2014 World Championships and their second-lowest finish over the last decade.

Lee has to finish top-five this weekend to qualify for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials, which will take place in State College, Pennsylvania, on April 4-5.

Our friends at www.flowrestling.org have the streaming rights to the two-day tournament which kicks off Friday. Wrestling at the U.S. Olympic Trials Qualifier begins at 11:00 (local time) on December 20.

Weekly FIVE! In Social Media
1. Big Move Monday -- Valdes Tobiera A. @alejandrovaldestobier (CUB) -- Senior Worlds 2019 #WrestleNursultan
2. #TBT - Icho Wins Tenth and Final World Title
3. @hasan_yazdani73 leads Iran 🇮🇷 and China 🇨🇳 through a joint workout while the two countries train together in Iran.
4. Sunday smiles 😃!
5. India’s 🇮🇳 Deepak PUNIA has been named United World Wrestling’s Junior Freestyle Wrestler of the Year.