To Our Friends in Wrestling Around the world

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


TOKYO (June 21) – Kohei Hasegawa won the national invitational title at 55kg in greco-roman for a second straight year and was named the outstanding wrestler of the competition and awarded the Meiji Nyugyo Cup. Hasegawa’s victory also ensured the recently crowned Asia champion a ticket to his first world championships in Herning, Denmark in September. The victory also extended a winning streak for Hasegawa that has included triumphs in the Nikola Petrov International, the Hungarian Cup and the Asian championships.

Also on the final day of competition at Yoyogi National Gymnasium, Ryutaro defeated reigning national champion Ryota Sato and Beijing Olympian Makoto Sasamoto for the greco-roman crown at 60kg for his first MNC title. He then edged Sato again in the national team wrestle-off to punch his ticket for Herning.

At 74kg, Takeo Kanakubo reversed a decision in last December’s national championships final to defeat Tsukasa Tsurumaki and claim the MNC crown. Tsurumaki, however, prevailed in the world team wrestle-off and will be headed to his second world meet.

In freestyle, Shinichi Yumoto, twin brother of Beijing Olympic bronze medalist Kenichi Yumoto, won his second invitational crown at 55kg and booked his first trip to the world meet. Yasuhiro Inaba, who was expected to challenge Yumoto for the world team position, fell in the semifinals to 2006 world team member Hideki Taoka.

Shogo Maeda, meanwhile, repeated his triumph from the national championships with a win over Shinya Odate at 60kg to grab his first ticket to the world meet. Kenichi Yumoto, who had been seeking to defend his position on the national team at 60kg, withdrew from the competition on June 19, apparently not yet fully recovered from hip surgery in January.

At 66kg, world student champion Tatsuhiro Yonemitsu defeated Beijing Olympian Kazuhiko Ikematsu, 2-1, in the semifinals and then eased past Tsukasa Sato to earn a spot on senior world team.

Results of semifinal, final and world team wrestle-off bouts


F1 – Shinichi Yumoto df. Hideki Taoka, 2-1 (3-5, 2-1, 1-0=2:04)
SF – Yumoto df. Hidekazu Tomita, 2-0 (4-1, TF6-0=1:51)
SF – Taoka df. Yasuhiro Inaba, 2-0 (3-0, 2-1)
(Yumoto wins 2nd straight MNC title, qualifies for 1st world team)

F1 – Shogo Maeda df. Shinya Odate (2-0 (1-0, 3-1)
SF – Maeda df. Yuta Horaguchi by fall, 2P=1:02 (1-0, F4-0)
SF – Odate df. Masashi Saito, 2-0 (2-1, 3-0 (2:08)
(Maeda wins 1st MNC title, qualifies for 1st world team)

F1 – Tatsuhiro Yonemitsu df. Tsukasa Sato, 2-1 (2-1, 6-1)
SF – Yonemitsu df. Kazuhiko Ikematsu, 2-1 (0-1, 2-0, 4-1)
SF – Sato df. Kazuki Morikawa, 2-0 (3-2, 5-0)
(Yonemitsu wins 1st MNC title, qualifies for 1st world team)


F1 – Kohei Hasegawa df. Kiyoharu Hirao, 2-0 (2-0, 1-0)
SF – Hasegawa df. Tomoya Murata, 2-0 (2-0, 1-0)
SF – Hirao df. Takuya Tei, 2-1 (0-2, 2-0, 3-0)
(Hasegawa wins 2nd straight MNC title, qualifies for 1st world team)

F1 – Ryutaro Matsumoto df. Makoto Sasamoto, 2-1 (2-0, 0-2, 2-0)
SF – Matsumoto df. Takumi Yokoyama, 2-0 (1-0, 4-0)
SF – Sasamoto df. Yasuyuki Tanioka, 2-1 (0-1, 1-0, 2-0)
WO – Matsumoto df. Ryota Sato, 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
(Matsumoto wins 1st MNC title, qualifies for 1st world team)

F1 – Takeo Kanakubo df. Tsukasa Tsurumaki, 2-1 (4-1, 0-2, 1-0)
SF – Tsurumaki df. Soichi Tanaka, 2-0 (2-0, 1-0)
SF – Kanakubo df. Kosuke Kaku, 2-0 (1-0, 2-0)
WO – Tsurumaki df. Kanakubo, 2-0 (4-0, 3-0)
(Kanakubo wins 1 st MNC title, Tsurumaki qualifies for 2nd world team)