Kagata Leads Japanese Trio into Women’s Finals at Jr. World C'ships, Cuba Tries Again for Gold

By William May

TAMPERE, Finland (August 4) – Three-time cadet world champion Kika KAGATA (JPN) rolled into the women’s gold medal final at 48kg on Friday after posting three decisive wins in the morning session of the Junior Wrestling World Championships.

Kagata notched a pair of technical falls in the early rounds at Tampere Exhibition and Sport Center and flattened Oksana LIVACH (UKR) at 3:50 in the semifinals after reversing a come-from-behind throw to pin the reigning European champ.

Kagata, also a two-time Asian junior champion, will attempt to win her first junior world title Friday evening, when she squares off with Turkan NASIROVA (AZE), the 2015 junior world champion at 44kg, in the first gold medal bout.

Kagata will be joined by Yarygin Grand Prix titlist Sae NANJO (55kg) and cadet world champion Yasuha MATSUYUKI (72kg) as the Japan women attempt to sew up another women’s team title.

Nanjo, cruised into the 55kg title bout, with three technical falls, including 10-0 drubbings of Leyla GURBANOVA (AZE), who won the cadet and junior world titles in 2015, and Olena KREMZER (UKR), the 2016 European under-23 champion.

Nanjo squares off with Pan American junior champion Lianna MONTERO HERRERA (CUB) in the 55kg final as Cuba takes a shot at bagging its first 

On Thursday, Yudaris SANCHEZ RODRIGUEZ (67kg) advanced to the light heavyweight final, but had to settle for a silver medal after a 9-7 loss following a late scramble with eventual winner Khanum VELIEVA (RUS).

Matsuyuki, who posted 10-0 wins in three of her four bouts at 72kg in the morning session, will take on Aiperi MEDET KYZY (KGZ) in a rematch of their gold medal bout at the cadet world championships last September in Tbilisi.  Matsuyuki won that encounter, 7-2. gold medal in the women’s events at the world championships for a second evening in a row.

At 63kg, Maya NELSON (USA) fashioned a 4-0 win over European champion Maria KUZNETSOVA (RUS) in the semifinals to ensure herself a shinier medal that last year’s bronze medal in Macon (FRA). Nelson takes on European bronze medalist Yuliana YANEVA (BUL) in the final.

Event Page

Medal Match Pairings & Semifinal Results

Women’s Wrestling

48kg (21 entries)
Gold – Kika KAGATA (JPN) v Turkan NASIROVA (AZE)
Bronze – Lady Raysa MORAN VALENZUELA (ECU) v Oksana LIVACH (UKR)
Bronze – Zeynep YETGIL (TUR) v Sarra HAMDI (TUN)

Semifinal – Kika KAGATA (JPN) df. Oksana LIVACH (UKR) by Fall, 3:50 (8-7)
Semifinal – Turkan NASIROVA (AZE) df. Sarra HAMDI (TUN), 13-4

55kg (24 entries)
Bronze – Leyla GURBANOVA (AZE) v Olena KREMZER (UKR)
Bronze – LIANG Jing (CHN) v Viktoria VAULINA (RUS)

Semifinal – Sae NANJO (JPN) df. Olena KREMZER (UKR) by TF, 10-0, 2:52
Semifinal – Lianna MONTERO HERRERA (CUB) df. Viktoria VAULINA (RUS), 4-0

63kg (18 entries)
Gold – Maya NELSON (USA) v Yuliana YANEVA (BUL)
Bronze – ZHANG Ying (CHN) v Maria KUZNETSOVA (RUS)
Bronze – Aina TEMIRTASSOVA (KAZ) v Aleksandra WOLCZYNSKA (POL)

Semifinal – Maya NELSON (USA) df. Maria KUZNETSOVA (RUS), 4-0
Semifinal – Yuliana YANEVA (BUL) df. Aleksandra WOLCZYNSKA (POL), 8-4

72kg (20 entries)
Gold – Aiperi MEDET KYZY (KGZ) v Yasuha MATSUYUKI (JPN)
Bronze – v Kristina SHUMOVA (RUS)
Bronze – CHANG Hui-tsz (TPE) v Dejah SLATER (CAN)

Semifinal – Aiperi MEDET KYZY (KGZ) df. Kristina SHUMOVA (RUS) by TF, 10-0, 0:26
Semifinal – Yasuha MATSUYUKI (JPN) df. Dejah SLATER (CAN) by TF, 10-0, 2:05