Variety of Countries Earn Medals – Fifteen countries earned medals in the three days of men’s freestyle wrestling. There were seven teams with multiple medals Iran (5), Russia (5), India (3) Ukraine (3), Cuba (2), India (2), TUR (2) and Hungary, United States, Armenia, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, Mongolia, Georgia Belarus and Uzbekistan (1).
Despite Broken Ankle, Burroughs Remains Undefeated – Jordan Burroughs (USA), the only 2012 Olympic Champion to compete in men’s freestyle, secured his second world gold on Wednesday, defeating Akbari of Iran 4-0. In addition to the world title, Burroughs also pushed his unbeaten streak to an impressive 65-straight matches.
While that might be impressive on any day, the USA Wrestling Twitter account confirmed that less than a month ago Burroughs had surgery to put six screws into his broken ankle.
“This has been the most difficult World Championship for me so,” said Burroughs. “I had to fight hard for the gold medal. I’m happy to still be the champion”
With an offensive style of attack-first wrestling, Burroughs was one of the most popular wrestlers with the fans earning arena-wide cheers for his impressive semifinal match win over Ali Shabanau. Burroughs was up 6-0 before Shabanau was disqualified for hands to the face.
In the finals Burroughs was able to get past Ezzatollah Akbari of Iran 4-0 using a combination of two push outs and a takedown.
With Akbari Finalists, Iran Wins Team Title
Though not the individual gold he might have wanted, Ezzatollah Akbari’s bronze at 74kg helped the Iranian team win their first team title in men’s freestyle since 2002. Before his semifinal bout with when they won the championship on their home soil of Tehran.
This year’s title in men’s freestyle marks Iran’s fifth title overall after winning team gold in 1961 (Tokyo) 1965 (Manchester), 1998 (Tehran) and 2002 (Tehran).
Already Venezuela’s most-decorated wrestler Mayelis Caripa Castillo made history Wednesday night in Budapest when she earned her country’s first-ever silver medal in senior-level women’s wrestling. Castillo used an impressive high-amplitude double leg to blast her way through the quarterfinal and semifinal competition. But her placement wasn’t only half her story.
Castillo quit the sport in 2007 after marrying the national team coach and committing herself to motherhood. However, after some encouragement from husband and friends she found herself back on the mats.
‘Second place is not bad,” she said after the match. “But it would have been good to finally take first place.”
China Impresses on First Day
Lead by a gold medal performance from 51kg “sledgehammer” Yanan Sun, the Chinese walked away with two medals in the first two women’s weight classes.
Sun used a big double leg finish and two gut wrench exposures to win by technical fall in only 44 seconds in the finals at 51kg. Meanwhile at 48kg Cheng Xu won a bronze after a dominating 8-0 technical fall over her Polish opponent.
New Japanese Champion at 48kg
Eri Tosaka kept alive the Japanese tradition of winning at the World Championship. The 20-year-old wrestler made her mark on the international scene with an impressive gold medal performance on Wednesday, winning five straight matches.
“I was dreaming of winning the gold medal before the World Championships,” said Tosaka. “I had a tough opponent in the final. My goal is to win the Olympics as well.”
Blind Kiwi Wrestler Makes History
Proving that wrestling is a sport without physical barriers, Clinton Davies of New Zealand took the mat on Wednesday to become the first blind wrestler to ever compete at the World Championships.
Though he’d end up losing to Quintana Intipe of Guinea-Bissau 7-0 in the first frame, Davies proved that wrestling is a sport of total physical equality.
Source: FILA News Bureau by T.R. Foley, Photo: delmagyar.hu