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By William May
(Japan Amateur Wrestling Federation, Public Information Committee:wmay52@hotmail.com


NEW DELHI (May 12) – Shogo Maeda took the silver medal at 60kg and Takao Isokawa grabbed a bronze at 96kg as the Asian wrestling championships got under way with the men's freestyle competition.(left=
Maeda, right=Isokawa)

Maeda edged Athens Olympian Ulan Nadyrbek Ulu (KGZ) in the semifinals, but fell to 2008 junior world champ Masoud Esmailpoor (IRI) as Iran took two of the three gold medals on offer on the first day of competition at Indira Ghandi Sports Complex. In the 60kg final, Maeda and Esmailpoor traded the first and second period with takedowns in the closing seconds of each stanza. In the third period, however, Esmailpoor scored with a force-out at 30 seconds, then blocked out Maeda's attempts to try and come from behind.

Meanwhile, Isokawa battled hard against 2007 world bronze medalist Reza Yazdani (IRI), briefly taking the lead in the second period of their quarterfinal bout, but came up short against the eventual champion.

The Tokuyama University staff member, however, rebounded for two wins in repechage to claim a bronze medal with three force-out points and a 2-0 triumph over Bekbolsun Kushsubakov (KGZ).

Also in opening day action, Kazuyuki Nagashima started off with a first-round win, but lost to Mendaihan (MGL) on a force-out in the final seconds of their quarterfinal bout and did not get the chance to wrestle for a medal.

Men's freestyle

60kg – MAEDA, Shogo (2nd, 13 entries)
R1 – bye
R2 – df. Lee Seung-Chul (KOR), 2-0 (2-1, 2x-2)
SF – df. Ulan Nadyrbek Ulu (KGZ), 2-1 (0-2, 3x-3, 4-2)
F1 – lost to Masoud Esmailpoor (IRI), 1-2 (1-1x, 1-0, 0-1)

74kg – NAGASHIMA, Kazuyuki (7th, 14 entries)
R1 – df. Azamat Sufiev (TJK), 2-0 (2-0, 6-1)
R2 – lost to M. Mendsaihan (MGL), 1-2 (0-3, 2-1, 3-4)
(Mendsaihan lost in semifinals, eliminating Nagashima)

96kg – ISOKAWA, Takao (3rd, 14 entries)
R1 – df. Nam Kwang-Il (PRK), 2-1 (1-0, 0-1, 1-0)
R2 – lost to Reza Yazdani (IRI), 0-2 (0-2, 1-4)
r1 – df. Lo Tien-yu (TPE), 2-0 (5-0, 6-0)
F3 – df. Bekbolsun Kushsubakov (KGZ), 2-0 (2-1, 1-0)

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