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


MOSCOW (September 7) – Defending champion and Olympic gold medalist Mijain Lopez Nunez (CUB) rolled over all comers for his fourth greco-roman crown at 120kg on the second day of the wrestling world championships.

Lopez refused to yield a single point in his five bouts at Olympiyskiy Sports Complex and overpowered Yuri Patrikeev (ARM) in the final with a tight gut wrench in the first period and cat-like bodylock and takedown in the second for a 3-0, 1-0 victory. Lopez won world titles in 2005, 2007 and 2009 as well as a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. He also has a silver medal from the 2006 world championships.

Lopez' fourth world title moves him into a tie for eighth place among greco-roman wrestling's elite. Hamid Soryan Reihanpour (IRI) moved into a tie for third on the greco-roman list with his fifth world title on the first day of the championships.

Alexander Karelin, formerly of the Soviet Union and Russian teams, tops the list with nine world championship titles, along with three Olympic gold medals and a silver.

At 84kg, Hristo Marinov defeated Athens Olympic champ Aleksey Mishin (RUS) 2-1 in the quarterfinals and went on to win his first world title with a 2-0 triumph over 2009 bronze medalist Pablo Shorey Hernandez (CUB). Also at 84kg, Nenad Zugaj defeated last year's world champ Nazmi Avluca (TUR) for a bronze medal and became Croatia's first medalist in the world wrestling championships. Croatia, formerly a part of Yugoslavia, first competed at the wrestling world championships in 1994.

Mishin (RUS) won the other bronze medal at 84kg, giving host Russia its fourth medal of the championships as the Russian team assured itself to the greco-roman team title. With only one weight category left to be contested, Russia leads with 38 points to 24 for Cuba and Bulgaria.

Unfortunately for the locals, Athens Olympic champ Khassan Baroev (RUS) was knocked out in the quarterfinals at 120kg and did not win a medal and Zaur Kuramagomedov (RUS) did not get past the second round at 60kg.

At 60kg, Hasan Aliyev (AZE), a junior world champ just one year ago, edged Ryutaro Matsumoto (JPN) 2-1 for his first senior world title, capping off a year that saw him with the European senior crown as well as the Golden Grand Prix title in Baku.

Matsumoto, meanwhile, hoping to become Japan's first greco-roman world champion since 1983, stunned Athens Olympic champ Jung Ji-Hyun (KOR), 2-1, in the semifinals for his first senior world medal.

Greco-roman concludes on September 8 with action in the 74kg weight category. Women's freestyle also gets under way with competition at 48kg and 51kg.

60g (31 entries)
F1 – Hasan Aliyev (AZE) df. Ryutaro Matsumoto (JPN), 2-1 (0-1, 1-0, 1-0)
F3 – Almat Kepispayev (KAZ) df. Ivo Angelov (BUL) by fall, 2P=1:48 (0-1, F3-0)
F3 – Jung Ji-Hyun (KOR) df. Revaz Lashkhi (GEO), 2-0 (1-0, 3-0)
SF – Aliyev (AZE) df. Kepispayev (KAZ), 2-0 (2-2, 2-0)
SF – Matsumoto (JPN) df. Jung (KOR), 2-1 (6-1, 0-3, 2-0)

84kg (40 entries)
F1 – Hristo Marinov (BUL) Pablo Shorey Hernandez (CUB)
F3 - Aleksey Mishin (RUS) df. Damian Jankowski (POL), 2-0 (2-0, 1-0)
F3 - Nenad Zugaj (CRO) df. Nazmi Avluca (TUR), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
SF – Marinov (BUL) df. Jankowski (POL), 2-1 (2-0, 0-2, 2-0)
SF – Pablo Shorey Hernandez (CUB) df. Nenad Zugaj (CRO), 2-1 (1-0, 0-1, 2-0)

120kg (31 entries)
F1 – Mijain Lopez Nunez (CUB) df. Yuri Patrikeev (ARM), 2-0 (3-0, 1-0)
F3 – Nurmakhan Tinaliyev (KAZ) df. Marek Svec (CZE), 2-0 (3-0, 7-0=1:03)
F3 – Riza Kalyaap (TUR) df. Dremiel Byers (USA), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
SF – Lopez Nunez (CUB) df. Tinaliyev (KAZ), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
SF – Patrikeev (ARM) df. Byers (USA), 1-0 (1-0, 3-0)

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