To Our Friends in Wrestling Around the world
By William May
（Japan Amateur Wrestling Federation, Public
Kyodo World Services, senior sports writer：firstname.lastname@example.org）
NATIONAL TEAM FOR WOMEN'S WORLD CUP, WORLD C'SHIPS
TOKYO (October 11) - Profiles of the
members of the Japanese women's national
team for the World Cup in Cairo, Egypt (October
19-20) and the world championships in Halkida,
Greece (November 2-3):
48 kg - SHIMIZU, Misato (Japan Beverage)
Born: 1977 March 25, Gifu Prefecture. Ht:
152 cm. Education: Takayama high school (Gifu)
- Tokyo Women's College of Physical Education.
Took third place in the national championships
in 1993 and won the women's junior world
championship crown at 44 kg. Repeated as
national champion in 1997 and 1998 and finished
fifth in the 1997 world championships. Was
eighth in the 2000 world championships, but
rebounded for fifth place last year.
51 kg - HATTORI, Ninako (Chukyo Women's University
Born: 1982 June 25, Kanagawa Prefecture.
Ht: 153 cm. Education: Chukyo Women's University
high school (Aichi). Started wrestling as
a member of the Tokai Juniors club in Kanagawa
and in 1999 won the 52 kg title in the cadet
national championships. She went on to finish
seventh in the world cadet meet. Hattori
won the junior Asia crown in 2000 at 50 kg
and in 2001 won her first senior national
title. She finished second in the Japan Queen's
Cup meet in 2002.
56 kg - YAMAMOTO, Seiko (Nihon University)
Born: 1980 August 22, Kanagawa Prefecture.
Ht: 150 cm. Education: Tokiwamatsu Gakuen
high school (Kanagawa). Won the Japan Women's
Open at 51 kg in 1998 and followed the next
year by winning the junior world championship
at 54 kg and the senior world title at 51
kg. She repeated in both the junior world
meet (54) and senior world tourney (56) in
2000. Yamamoto won her third world championship
in 2001 and received the Emperor's Cup at
the national championships as the most valuable
wrestler for the year in Japan -- male or
female. Her father is Ikuei Yamamoto, former
Japanese national team member who wrestled
in the 1972 Olympics and her sister is Miyu
Yamamoto (Ikeda in the FILA Database), also
a three-time world champion for Japan.
59 kg - IWAMA, Rena (Replay)
Born: 1979 August 2, Iwate Prefecture.
Ht: 157 cm. Education: Miyako Shogyo high
school (Iwate). Won the junior national title
at 58 kg in 1999 then went on to win the
junior world and senior national championship
title at 62 kg in the same year. Iwama also
finished second in the world championships
in 2000 but fell to 14th in 2001. Later in
2001, she won her second straight national
63 kg - ICHO, Kaori (Chukyo Women's University
Born: 1984 June 13, Aomori Prefecture.
Ht: 165 cm. Education: Chukyo Women's University
high school (Aichi). Icho won the schoolgirls
championship in 1996 and won the junior high
school girls crown at 52 kg in 1998. In 2001,
she won the Japan Queen's Cup crown at 56
kg with a pin over reigning world champion
Seiko Yamamoto. She finished fourth in the
national championships last December. Icho,
making her international debut at the Pusan
Asian Games in October, won the silver medal
at 63 kg.
67 kg - SAITO, Norie (Japan Beverage)
Born: 1978 October 24, Ibaraki Prefecture.
Education: Tsuchiura Nichidai high school
(Ibaraki) - Teikyo University. Saito practiced
judo in high school, but also entered wrestling
competitions, winning the national championship
title at 70 kg in 1995. Saito devoted herself
to judo as a student at Teikyo, but switched
her attention to wrestling after graduating.
In 2001, she represented Japan in the world
championships, finishing 12th, and won the
national championship title.
72 kg - HAMAGUCHI, Kyoko (Hamaguchi Gym)
Born: 1978 January 11, Tokyo. The daughter
of former pro wrestler, Heigo "Animal"
Hamaguchi, Kyoko began her sports career
in bodybuilding and switched to wrestling.
She won her first world championship crown
in 1997 and added titles in 1998 and 1999.
In 1998, Hamaguchi was named FILA's female
wrestler of the year. Hamaguchi, however,
finished third in the 2000 world championships
and fourth a year later. She has won six
national championships in a row and won the
Asian Games gold medal in October.
48 kg - NOGUCHI, Mika (Chukyo Women's University)
Born: 1982 October 9, Kagoshima Prefecture.
Education: Kanoya Chuo high school (Kagoshima).
Won seven straight titles in the national
schoolboys/schoolgirls meet. In 1999, Noguchi
won the world cadet championship at 46 kg
and finished third in the 2001 Japan Queen's
Cup meet at 46 kg. She finished in the high
school national championships in 2001.
51 kg - ICHO, Chiharu (Chukyo Women's University)
Born: 1981 October 9, Aomori Prefecture.
Education: Amino highi school (Kyoto). Started
wrestling at the schoolboy/schoolgirl level
and won the high school national championship
in 1998. The following year she won the senior
national title at 51 kg and the wrapped up
the junior national crown at 50 kg in 2000.
She won the junior world championship in
2000 and 2001. Chiharu, the older sister
of Kaori, won the 2002 world university title
at 51 kg.
56 kg - YOSHIDA, Saori (Chukyu Women's University)
Born: 1982 October 5, Mie Prefecture. Ht:
156 cm. Education: Hisai high school (Mie).
Quickly built a reputation throughout Japan
as an unrivaled schoolgirl wrestler. Won
the world cadet crown at 56 kg in 1999, added
the junior world title at 58 kg in 2000 and
2001. She won the gold medal at 55 kg at
the Asian Games in Pusan and remains unbeaten
59 kg - IWAMA, Rena
63 kg - ICHO, Kaori
67 kg - SAITO, Norie
72 kg - HAMAGUCHI, Kyoko