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


BAKU (July 17) – Ayano Suzuki and Mami Shinkai notched impressive wins early but had to settle for silver medals in the women's events at the FILA Golden Grand Prix final in Baku. Chikako Matsukawa and Kei Yamana. meanwhile, rebounded from early losses to defeat a pair of 2009 world finalists in the bronze medal matches to give Japan four medals on the second day of FILA's biggest prize money event.

At 48kg, Suzuki stopped 2009 Pan American champion Alyssa Lampe (USA) 2-1 in the semifinals to ensure an improvement upon her bronze medal from a year ago. In the final, however, the Tokyo teenager could not unlock the tight defense of 2008 world silver medal winner Jyldyz Eshimova (KAZ).

At 67kg, world team member Shinkai edged 2009 European champion Katerina Burmistrova (UKR) 2-1 in the semifinals, but came up short against Olympic and world bronze medalist Elena Shalygina (KAZ) in the championship bout.

At 55kg, GGP defending champion Chikako Matsukawa got caught on her back for a fall against the unorthodox Natalie Synyshyn (UKR), but came back for the bronze medal with a three-period win against last year's 59kg world champion Yulia Ratkevich (AZE).

At 59kg, former junior world champ Yamana was tripped up early by world bronze medalist Marianna Sastin (HUN), but returned with a pair of wins in the consolation bracket, including a 2-0 triumph over world silver medalist Sona Ahmadli (AZE), for her second straight GGP bronze medal.

The other members of Japan's female squad hit rough patches early and were unable to medal. Notably, Takako Saito took four points and the first period of her opening bout at 59kg with 2009 European champion Johanna Mattsson (SWE) before losing in three to the GGP defending champion.

Saito had to settle for a fifth, however, when she was tagged for the fall in the third-place final by 2009 world bronze medal winner Ganna Vasilenko (UKR).

Results of bouts involving Japanese entries:

Women's freestyle
48kg – SUZUKI, Ayano (2nd, 6 entries)
R1 – df. Anna Lukasiak (POL), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
SF – df. Alyssa Lampe (USA), 2-1 (0-4, 1-0, 3-0)
F1 – lost to Jyldyz Eshimova (KAZ), 0-2 (0-1, 0-1)

51kg – KAI, Yuri(7th, 9 entries)
R1 – bye
R2 – lost to Natalia Budu (MDA), 0-2 (0-1, 3-3)

55kg – MATSUKAWA, Chikako (3rd, 8 entries)
R1 – df. Anastasija Grigorjeva (LAT),2-0 (4-3, 1-1)
SF – lost to Nataliya Synyshyn (UKR) by fall, 1P (F0-4)
F3 – df. Yuliya Ratkevich (AZE), 2-1 (3-3, 2-1, 3-0)

59kg – YAMANA, Kei (3rd, 10 entries)
R1 – df. Kelsey Campbell (USA), 2-0 (1-0, 3-1)
R2 – lost to Marianna Sastin (HUN) by fall, 1P (F0-3)
r1 – df. Olesya Zamula (AZE), 2-0 (2-0, 1-1)
F3 – df. Sona Ahmadli (AZE), 2-0 (1-0, 2-1)

59kg – SAITO, Takako (5th, 10 entries)
R1- bye
R2 – lost to Johanna Mattsson (SWE), 1-2 (4-0, 0-2, 0-1)
F3 – lost to Ganna Vasilenko (UKR) by fall, 1P (F2-7)

63kg – KUDO, Kayoko (7th, 14 entries)
R1 – df. Elina Vaseva (BUL), 2-0 (3-0, 4-3)
R2 – lost to Hanna Johansson (SWE), 0-2 (0-1, 0-1)

67kg – SHINKAI, Mami (2nd, 8 entries)
R1 – df. Maja Erlandsen (NOR), 2-0 (2-2, 1-0)
SF – df. Katerina Burmistrova (UKR), 2-1 (1-1, 1-0, 1-0)
F1 – lost to Elena Shalygina (KAZ), 0-2 (0-1, 2-3)

72kg – no Japanese entry

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