To Our Friends in Wrestling Around the world


By William May
(Japan Amateur Wrestling Federation, Public Information Committee
Kyodo World Services, senior sports


HERNING, Denmark (September 21) ? National team newcomer Shogo Maeda had the European champion and a two-time world champion on the ropes but, in the end, had to settle for fifth place at 60kg in men’s freestyle on the second day of the wrestling world championships.

Maeda fell to European champ Zelimhkan Huseynov (AZE) in the quarterfinals after a video review of a controversial exchange, and then dropped a hard-fought battle with two-time world champion Dilshod Mansurov (UZB) in the final for third place.

Japan’s other two entries on the second day of matches at Messecenter Herning both lost their opening matches to formidable Turkish opponents and finished further down in the final rankings.

Shinya Matsumoto, making his second trip to the world meet, lost in straight periods to European bronze medalist Gokhan Yavaser (TUR) at 84kg and Nobuyoshi Arakida could not stop the gut wrenches or leg attacks of Recep Kara (TUR), also a bronze medal winner at the Euro finals in Vilnius.

A day after Tatsuhiro Yonemitsu won a bronze medal for Japan at 66kg, Maeda mounted his own challenge for a piece of tournament.

After a pair of convincing wins, Maeda squared off against Huseynov in the quarterfinals and took a 2-0 lead with a pair of go-behinds. The European champ, however, attacked from underneath with a pair of rolls that were scored for Maeda, but then later reversed after a review.

Huseynov again gave up a point in the second, but took control with his own takedown to gut wrench combination, dashing Maeda hopes for an upset.

After coming from behind to win a repechage match, Maeda took the first period against Mansurov from the clinch after two minutes of hand-fighting. The former world champ at 55kg, however, opened up in the second to square the match with a pair of single-leg takedowns and an ankle turn.

In the third, Maeda could not get inside the defense of the Uzbek veteran, who wins the draw for the clinch and converts with a single-leg takedown to win for the bronze medal.

Wrestling continues on the third day with action in the final category in men’s freestyle, 74kg, and the two lightest categories in female wrestling ? 48kg and 51kg.

60kg ? MAEDA, Shogo (5th, 32 entries)

R1 ? df. Hardeep Singh (IND), 2-1 (2-0, 3-4, 6-0=0:45)
Maeda takes first period with a pair of go-behind points, but drops the second on a late single-leg counter. In the third period, Maeda scores with a single-leg to back exposure and then ends the match open with a gut wrench.

R2 ? df. Robertti Cesar (VEN), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0=2:03)
Maeda drives his opponent out of bounds with a single-leg in the first period, then switches out of the clinch in the second.

QF ? lost to Zelimkhan Huseynov (AZE), 0-2 (4-7, 1-4)
(See above)

r1 ? df. Artur Arakelyan (ARM), 2-1 (1-6, 6-4, 3x-3=last)
Maeda comes out sluggish in the first period, but roars back with a double-leg takedown to the back. Trailing in the third period, Maeda ducks behind for a takedown and the decisive final point.

F3 ? lost to Dilshod Mansurov (UZB), 1-2 (1-0=2:01, 2-5, 0-1=2:04)
(See above)

84kg ? MATSUMOTO, Shinya (32nd, 37 entries)
R1 ? lost to Gokhan Yavaser (TUR), 0-2 (0-1, 0-1)
Matsumoto gives up go-behind from chest-to-chest tie early in the first period, then gets countered in the second off a double-leg attempt. Matsumoto was eliminated when Yavaser lost to Jacob Herbert (USA) in the quarterfinals.

120kg ? ARAKIDA, Nobuyoshi (26th, 27 entries)
R1 ? lost to Recep Kara (TUR), 0-2 (0-7=0:59, 0-4)
Arakida is taken down quickly to start the bout and surrenders three gut wrenches in the first period. In the second, Arakida tries to counter Kara’s leg attacks but cannot score against the European bronze medal winner.

Kara lost in the next round to four-time Asia champion Fardin Masoumi Valadi (IRI), knocking Arakida out of medal contention.