Defending Champ Boltukaev Leads Russian Quartet into Finals at European C’ships
Wednesday, May 3, 2017 - 15:14 By William May
NOVI SAD, Serbia (May 3) – Defending champion Anzor BOLTUKAEV (RUS) cobbled together three wins Wednesday to advance to the 97kg final on Day Two of the European Senior Wrestling Championships.
Boltukaev, who struggled in his first two wins, opened up in the semifinals against fellow Rio 2016 Olympian Michail GANEV (BUL) for a technical fall victory and a berth opposite Riza YILDIRIM (TUR) in the championship final Wednesday evening.
Boltukaev will be joined by three Russian teammates in Wednesday’s gold medal matches – Ilyas BEKBULATOV (65kg) in freestyle as well as Natalya MALYSHEVA (53kg) and Lyubov OVCHAROVA (60kg) in women’s wrestling.
Two-time bronze medal winner Bekbulatov notched three technical falls on his way to the 65kg final at Spens Sport Hall and will seek to upgrade to a gold medal facing Borislav NOVACHKOV (BUL).
Novachkov will also wrestle for his first European gold medal, after winning a bronze medal at the European championships in 2014. In that tourney, Novachkov stunned London 2012 gold medalist Togrul ASGAROV (AZE) in his opening match.
In the women’s events, last year’s European under-23 champion Malysheva edged last year’s 2016 bronze medal winner Nina HEMMER (GER), 5-4, in the 53kg semifinals to advance to her first senior championship finals.
Malysheva will square off with 2012 world champion Vanesa KALADZINSKAYA (BLR), who is also appearing in her first continental championship final. Kaladzinskaya edged two-time European silver medalist Maria PREVOLARAKI (GRE), 2-1, in the semifinals.
Two-time junior world champion Ovcharova notched a pair of falls at 60kg over European junior champion Kriszta INCZE (ROU) and two-time senior titlist Johanna MATTSSON (SWE) to advance to the 60kg final.
In her senior championships debut, Ovacharova will take on the returning champion at 63kg Anastasija GRIGORJEVA (LAT), who will be seeking her fifth senior European crown. On Wednesday, Grigorjeva notched a fall and a pair of technical falls, including an 11-1 triumph over 2016 U23 winner Tetiana OMELCHENKO (AZE) in the semifinals.
Pairings for Wednesday evening’s finals and semifinal results:
65kg (19 entries)
Gold – Borislav NOVACHKOV (BUL) v Ilyas BEKBULATOV (RUS)
Bronze – David HABAT (SLO) v Gor OGANESYAN (UKR)
Bronze – Gitinomagomed GADZHIEV (AZE) v Zurabi IAKOBISHVILI (GEO)
Semifinal – Borislav NOVACHKOV (BUL) df. Gor OGANESYAN (UKR), 8-0
Semifinal – Ilyas BEKBULATOV (RUS) df. Zurabi IAKOBISHVILI (GEO) by TF, 10-0, 5:06
97kg (21 entries)
Gold – Anzor BOLTUKAEV (RUS) v Riza YILDIRIM (TUR)
Bronze – Aleksandr HUSHTYN (BLR) v Michail GANEV (BUL)
Bronze – Magomedgadzhi NUROV (MKD) v Elizbar ODIKADZE (GEO)
Semifinal – Anzor BOLTUKAEV (RUS) df. Michail GANEV (BUL) by TF, 11-0, 3:17
Semifinal – Riza YILDIRIM (TUR) df. Elizbar ODIKADZE (GEO), 8-2
53kg (12 entries)
Gold – Natalia MALYSHEVA (RUS) v Vanesa KALADZINSKAYA (BLR)
Bronze – Ana RANDELOVIC (SRB) v Nina HEMMER (GER)
Bronze – Iulia LEORDA (MDA) v Maria PREVOLARAKI (GRE)
Semifinal – Natalia MALYSHEVA (RUS) df. Nina HEMMER (GER), 5-4
Semifinal – Vanesa KALADZINSKAYA (BLR) df. Maria PREVOLARAKI (GRE), 2-1
60kg (11 entries)
Gold – Lyubov OVCHAROVA (RUS) v Anastasija GRIGORIJEVA (LAT)
Bronze – Kriszta INCZE (ROU) v Johanna MATTSSON (SWE)
Bronze – Anzhelina LYSAK (UKR) v Tetiana OMELCHENKO (AZE)
Semifinal – Lyubov OVCHAROVA (RUS) df. Johanna MATTSSON (SWE) by Fall, 2:40 (4-0)
Semifinal – Anastasija GRIGORIJEVA (LAT) df. Tetiana OMELCHENKO (AZE) by TF, 11-1, 5:39