Ait Ouagram Holds On in Africa-Oceania Qualifier, Egypt Fills Out Greco-Roman Card

By William May

ALGIERS (April 1) – Zied AIT OUAGRAM (MAR) held on for 5-4 a victory in the final bout at 75kg on Friday and secured his ticket for Rio 2016 Olympic Games as the curtain came down on the first day of the Africa-Oceania continental qualifying tournament.

Ouagram held off a determined African bronze medalist Akrem BOUDJELINE (ALG), who was backed by a boisterous and vociferous crown of locals at Mohamed Boudiaf Olympic Complex, to claim the 75kg crown with three wins without a loss.

Ouagram, who won eight African titles (2007-2015), earlier defeated reigning champion Mahmoud SEBIE (EGY) by technical fall to qualify for Rio 2016 for his new country, Morocco.

“I’m really excited about returning to the Olympic Games,” Ait Ouagram said after his second win. “In 2012, I went to London for Tunisia but this time I will be going as a member of the Moroccan team.”

Meanwhile, Egypt filled out its Greco-Roman card Rio 2016 with victories by Haithem MAHMOUD (EGY) at 59kg and Sebie in the four-wrestler Nordic competition to finish second to Ait Ouagram at 75kg and become Egypt’s sixth qualifier for Rio in the classic style.

African championships silver medalist Hemza HALOUI (ALG) gave the home crowd a chance to cheer at 98kg, where he defeated Choucri ATAFI (MAR), 4-0, to grab second place and a ticket to Rio.

Mahmoud’s win at 59kg also gave Morocco a second berth in Rio 2016, as Mehdi MESSAOUDI (MAR) followed the winner with a second place.

In the morning session, Vinod KUMAR (66kg) and Ivan POPOV (130kg) also snared a pair of tickets to Rio.

Oceania champion Kumar came from behind to defeat regional rival Craig MILLER (NZL), 12-6, in the semifinals at 66kg and grab the berth for Australia.

Popov gave Australia a second Greco-Roman berth with a win by fall over African bronze medalist Ali BOUACHIOUM (ALG) at 4:20.

Africa champion Adem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG) grabbed a ticket for the home team at 85kg, with a pair of technical falls but then stumbled , 4-3, against  98kg Africa champ Ahmed SAAD (EGY) in Friday evening’s final.



59kg (3 entries, Nordic system)
RR1 – Haithem MAHMOUD (EGY) df. Mehdi MESSAOUDI (MAR) by TF, 8-0, 3:45
RR2 – Mehdi MESSAOUDI (MAR) df. Billel BENBRIH (ALG), 8-6
RR3 - Haithem MAHMOUD (EGY) df. Billel BENBRIH (ALG), 7-0

Final ranking for 59kg
1. Haithem MAHMOUD (EGY), 2 wins, 0 losses (7 classification points)
2. Mehdi MESSAOUDI (MAR), 1-1 (3 CP)
3. Billel BENBRIH (ALG), 0-2 (1 CP)

66kg (6 entries)
Gold – Adham KAHK (EGY) df. Vinod KUMAR (AUS) by TF, 10-0, 1:05
Bronze – Craig MILLER (NZL) – no opponent
Bronze – Lukas THOMAS (NAM) df. Souleymen NASR (TUN) by TF, 8-0, 2:29
Semifinal – Vinod KUMAR (AUS) df. Craig MILLER (NZL), 12-6
Semifinal – Adham KAHK (EGY) df. Souleyman NASR (TUN) by TF, 11-2, 4:21

75kg (4 entries, Nordic system)
RR1 – Zied AIT OUAGRAM (MAR) df. Mahmoud SEBIE (EGY) by TF, 8-0, 2:02
RR1 – Akrem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG) df. Wael SELMI (TUN) by TF, 8-0, 5:15

RR2 – Mahmoud SEBIE (EGY) df. Akrem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG) by TF, 10-2, 2:15
RR2 – Zied AIT OUAGRAM (MAR) df. Wael SELMI (TUN) by TF, 10-0, 2:31
RR3 – Mahmoud SEBIE (EGY) df. Wael SELMI (TUN) by Fall, 0:25 (4-0)
RR3 – Zied AIT OUGRAM (MAR) df. Akrem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG), 5-5

Final ranking for 75kg
1. Zied AIT OUGRAM (MAR), 3-0 (11 CP)
2. Mahmoud SEBIE (EGY), 2-1 (8 CP)
3. Akrem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG), 1-2 (6 CP)
4. Wael SELMI (TUN), 0-3 (0 CP)

85kg (7 entries)
Gold – Ahmed SAAD (EGY) df. Adem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG), 4-3
Bronze – Kahlid SAHLIK (MAR) df. Nathaniel TUAMOHELOA (ASA), 9-5
Bronze – Mohamed MISSAOUI (TUN) df. Nicolaas VERREYNNE (AUS) by TF, 8-0, 1:48
Semifinal – Adem BOUDJEMLINE (ALG) df. Kahlid SAHLIK (MAR) by TF, 8-0, 2:04
Semifinal – Ahmed SAAD (EGY) df. Mohamed MISSAOUI (TUN), 9-1, 4:07

98kg (3 entries, Nordic system)
RR1 – Hamdy ABDELWAHAB (EGY) df. Hemza HALOUI (ALG), 5-2
RR2 – Hamdy ABDELWAHAB (EGY) df. Choucri ATAFI (MAR), 4-0
RR3 – Hemza HALOUI (ALG) df. Choucri ATAFI (MAR), 4-0

Final rankings for 98kg
1. Hamdy ABDELWAHAB (EGY), 2-0 (6 CP)
2. Hemza HALOUI (ALG), 1-1 (4 CP)
3. Choucri ATAFI (MAR), 0-2 (0 CP)

130kg (6 entries)
Gold – Mohamed ABDELLATIF (EGY) df. Ivan POPOV (AUS) by TF, 10-0, 1:11
Bronze – Ali BOUACHIOUM (ALG) – no opponent
Bronze – Radhouane CHEBBI (TUN) df. Reda HINANI (MAR) by TF, 8-0, 2:10
Semifinal – Ivan POPOV (AUS) df. Ali BOUACHIOUM (ALG) by Fall, 4:20 (10-5)
Semifinal – Mohamed ABDELLATIF (EGY) df. Radhouane CHEBBI (TUN), 4-0