To Our Friends in Wrestling Around the world


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

January wrestling news


  TOKYO (January 6) - Coaches, trainers and other experts in women’s wrestling from 16 countries recently took part in a special coaching clinic at the Japan Institute of Sport Science (JISS) in Tokyo.

  The clinic, held 6-9 January, was conducted in conjunction with the women’s world training camp hosted by the Japan Wrestling Federation. Participants included instructors from the United States, Canada, Russia, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Kazakhstan, China and Korea among others.

  FILA Vice President Mario Saletnig and Mr. Kazarian provided instruction on the rules of freestyle wrestling. Kazuhito Sakae, head coach of the Japanese national team, spoke about the techniques of women’s wrestling with translation in English and Russian. Dr. Tunnemann of the FILA Database in Leipzig, Germany also made a presentation.

  The world training camp with participants from 13 countries will continue to 15 January. Participants from Japan feature seven former and reigning world champions. European champions from Russia and Germany as well as Asian champions from China are also taking part in this high-level camp.


  TOKYO (January 5-15) - The world’s top female wrestlers from 13 countries took part in an elite training camp, January 5-15, at the Japan Institute of Sports Science in Tokyo.

  Olympic and world champions Saori Yoshida (55 kg) and Kaori Icho (63), along with five-time world champion Kyoko Hamaguchi (72), led the host delegation from Japan. Japanese participants in the training camp also included four-time world champion Seiko Yamamoto (59), three-time world champion and former FILA female wrestler of the year Hitomi Sakamoto (51) and Olympic silver medalist Chiharu Icho.

  European and junior world champions from Russia, Sweden, Canada, China, Austria, Germany and other countries aimed to make the 11-day training camp a stepping stone in the future development of women’s wrestling. “I believe that this kind of training camp will lead to the further development of women’s wrestling,” said Kazuhito Sakae, head coach of the Japanese women’s national team.

  “I hope that we will be able to bring together all of the world medalists at the next camp. Also, we need to have a training camp just for the wrestlers from countries still developing female wrestling. “I plan to continue strongly making this request to Mr. (Tomiaki) Fukuda (FILA vice president and president of the Japan Wrestling Federation),” said Sakae.


  KRASNOYARSK, Russia (January 26) - Kyoto high school student Hiroe Suzuki took third place at the prestigious Ivan Yarygin Memorial Golden Grand Prix Wrestling Tournament. Suzuki, who took a third place in last month's Japanese national championships at 67 kg, is from Ritsumeikan Uji high school in Kyoto. Also for Japan, Aoyama Gakuin University student Hiromi Ikeda lost out in the second round at 48 kg and had to settle for seventh place.


  TOKYO (January 7) - The winter schedule for the men's freestyle and greco-roman national teams have largely been set, beginning with intensive training camps in January and February.

  The first training camp, which included most of the winners from December's national championships in both styles, was held January 16-23 at the Japan Institute of Sports Science (JISS) in Tokyo. The second training camps, also set for JISS, will be held February 15-21 for greco-roman and February 22-28 for freestyle.

  Both squads will then journey west to take part in some of the winter wrestling events in Asia and Europe, although some of the details of the tours have not been finalized yet. The men's freestyle team is tentatively set to wrestle in the Golden Grand Prix event in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on March 10-12 and then to Bulgaria for the Dan Kolov International in Plovdiv, March 25-26.

  The greco-roman team, meanwhile, will travel to Poland for the Poland Open in Chelm, March 10-12 and then to Sofia for the Nikola Petrov Golden Grand Prix competition, March 18-19. With the Asian Games in December and the Asian championships following so soon after the winter tours in April, the Japan Wrestling Federation (JWF) said it plans to send its second team to the continental meet.

  The Asian championships are scheduled for April 4-9 in the Kazakh capital of Almaty.


  TOKYO (January 24) - A student select team including a number of collegiate national champions will compete in the Dave Schultz Memorial international wrestling tournament February 2-4 in Colorado Springs. The first contingent, made up of greco-roman wrestlers, left for the U.S. on January 24 and was followed by a mixed group of wrestlers on January
30. The greco-roman team took part in the Kit Carson Cup on January 27-28, losing three duals to three different squads from the host United States.

  Takushoku University's Kazuma Kuramoto and Ryutaro Matsumoto of Nippon Sports Science University were the only wrestlers to post winning records for Japan in the duals with a pair of wins against one loss each at 55 kg and 60 kg respectively.


  TOKYO (January 19) - The Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) has accorded wrestling an “A” ranking for financial support in the fiscal year 2006. Wrestling was also ranked “A” by the JOC in fiscal 2005, mostly on the strength of the success of Japan's female wrestlers in international competition.

  Four sports -- swimming, skating, judo and softball -- were given “Special A” rankings, while wrestling was among five federations in the “A” category. The other category “A” sports were athletics, skiing, gymnastics and baseball. JOC observers suggested that wrestling will need more success from the men in order to reach the “Special A”category.