To Our Friends in Wrestling Around the world


By William May
(Japan Amateur Wrestling Federation, Public Information Committee


    TOKYO (June 2) - Japan will send three men and five women to the Golden Grand Prix wrestling final June 23-25 in the Azerbaijan capital of Baku.

    The men, who qualified for the final during the winter tours, are Senshu University student Yasuhiro Inaba (FS, 55), veteran Makoto Sasamoto (GR, 60) and Kokushikan University’s Tsukasa Tsurumaki (GR, 74).

   Ayako Shoda (59) will lead the women’s squad and is the lone world champion from Japan to decide to take part in the event. Fellow world champs Hitomi Sakamoto, Saori Yoshida and Kaori Icho have opted to sit out the Grand Prix final and will be replaced by Asia No. 2 Yuri Kai (51), Asia champion Chikako Matsukawa (55) and junior world
champion Mio Nishimaki (63). Hiroe Suzuki of Ritsumeikan University earned a berth in the final at 67 kg in a winter qualifying competition.

   The Golden Grand Prix competition features world and continental champions as well as the top qualifiers during the winter season. The winners at each category in each of the three styles will win $5,000 with second place netting $3,000 and third place $1,000.