To Our Friends in Wrestling Around the world

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


PATTAYA, Thailand (May 2) - Kohei Hasegawa rolled to his first major international title with a convincing triumph at 55kg in greco-roman on the first day of the Asian senior wrestling championships. Hasegawa notched four wins without giving up a point at the Ambassador City Hotel, where the competition is being held. It was Hasegawa’s first continental championship title and his third gold medal in international competition this year.

Despite the victory, the 24-year-old Shizuoka native kept the triumph in perspective. “My opponents today are probably not the wrestlers I will see at the world championships (in September). Several countries are going through their post-Olympic change to the next generation of wrestlers and I saw some new faces today,” Hasegawa said.

Meanwhile, Ryota Sato and Tsukasa Tsurumaki both rebounded for bronze medals after disappointing losses in the semifinals. Sato, wrestling in his first major championships for Japan, could not turn the eventual champion from China in the last 30 seconds of a hard-fought semifinal at 60kg, but came back with a convincing win against Chinese Taipei for the bronze.

Tsurumaki thought he had the tiebreaker with the last point in the third period of his 74kg semifinal with Korea, forgetting that the point against him was the result of a caution which trumped the last point as tiebreaker.

At 66kg, Tsutomu Fujimura missed out on the medals after giving up a late point to the 2006 world student champion from Korea in the semifinals, and then being unable to break through the tight defense of Iran’s 2008 junior world champ in the bronze medal final.


55kg - HASEGAWA, Kohei (1st, 11 entries)

R1 - df. Askhat Kudaibergenov (KAZ), 2-0 (1-0, 7-0)
Hasegawa reverses from down in the par terre position to take the first period, then rolls to the second with an arm throw and near fall against the former junior world silver medalist.

R2 - df. Ho Quang Hai (VIE), 2-0 (5-0, 7-0)
Hasegawa dominates on the feet and on the mat, capping his win with a 5-point lift and throw.

SF - df. Mohammad Faghiri (IRI), 2-0 (3-0, 2-0)
Hasegawa and the two-time Asia junior champion battle scoreless on the feet in both periods. Hasegawa steps over the gut wrench for two points in the first, then hits his own wrench for exposure in the second.

F1 - df. Joginder Singh (IND), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
Hasegawa defends in par terre for the first period, then goes behind for a point in the middle of the second.


60kg - SATO, Ryota (3rd, 12 entries)

R1 - bye

R2 - df. Wichien Jirawut (THA), 2-0 (1-0, 7-2)
Sato forces the local favorite out of bounds for a point in the first period, then opens up in the second period for a one-sided win.

SF - lost to Wan Feihu (CHN), 1-2 (1-0, 0-1, 0-1)
Sato takes the first period with a defensive point, but gives up a counter point in the second. Scoreless on the feet in the third, Sato starts par terre in the offensive position but cannot convert in the final 30 seconds.

F3 - df. Huang Shih-chieh (TPE), 2-0 (4-0, 5-3)


66kg - FUJIMURA, Tsutomu (5th, 14 entries)

R1 - df. Mohamed al Marafi (JOR), 2-0 (2-0, 8-0)
Fujimura steps over his opponent’s attack in par terre in the first period, then stops a front headlock and turn in the second and rolls up exposure points on the mat.

R2 - df. Sultan Muktarov (KGZ), 2-0 (3-2, 1-0)
Fujimura takes first period with a go-behind point and then defends for a point in the second.

SF - lost to Eom Hyeok (KOR), 1-2 (2-3, 1-0, 5-5x=last point)
Fujimura gives up a late point in the third period and slips into the consolation bracket on last-point criteria.

F3 - lost to Saeid Abdevali (IRI), 0-2 (0-1, 0-2)
After dropping the first period to lasy year’s junior world champ, Fujimura ramps up the pace but cannot convert to points or a fleeing call. His coaches use their challenge card, but to no avail as Fujimura has to settle for fifth place.


74kg - TSURUMAKI, Tsukasa (3rd, 13 entries)

R1 - bye

R2 - df. Nguyen Van Chung (VIE), 2-0 (3-0, 6-0)
Tsurumaki rolls up the points on the mat for a comfortable win.

SF - lost to Kang Hee-Bok (KOR), 1-2 (0-1, 1-0, 1-1x=caution point)
After five minutes without an offensive point scored by either wrestler, the referee hits Tsurumaki with a caution and awards one point to Kang. Tsurumaki responds with a force-out, but loses on the caution point criteria.

F3 - df. Dauletgeldi Kadyrov (TKM), 2-0 (1-0, 6-0)
Tsurumaki defends for a point in the first period, then scores a 3-point takedown in the second and follows up with a gut wrench and then a force-out for the technical.