Live Blog: World Championships Day 8 - GR 63kg, 67kg, 87kg

By Vinay Siwach

OSLO, Norway (October 9) -- Day eight of the senior World Championships in Oslo with three new Greco-Roman weight classes -- 63kg, 67kg, 87kg -- in action and Tokyo Olympic champion Mohammadreza GERAEI (IRI) in action and trying to do the golden double. If you missed the four new world champions that were crowned Friday, here's the wrap -- Vlasov claims third title, first in six years


1330: Results of the quarterfinals of the GR 87kg weight class

Istvan TAKACS (HUN) df Kristoffer BERG (SWE), 3-1
Kiryl MASKEVICH (BLR) df Metehan BASAR (TUR), 10-0
Turpan BISULTANOV (DEN) df Artur SHAHINYAN (ARM), via fall

1315: Results of the quarterfinals of the GR 67kg weight class

Nazir ABDULLAEV (RWF) df Murat FIRAT (TUR), 2-1
Almat KEBISPAYEV (KAZ) df Morten THORESEN (NOR), via fall
Ramaz ZOIDZE (GEO) df Sebastian NAD (SRB), 8-1
Mohammadreza GERAEI (IRI) df Hasrat JAFAROV (AZE), 9-0

1300: Results of the quarterfinals of the GR 63kg weight class

Leri ABULADZE (GEO) df Kensuke SHIMIZU (JPN), 5-4
Meysam DALKHANI (IRI) df Lenur TEMIROV (UKR), 3-3 
Erik TORBA (HUN) df Mihai MIHUT (ROU), 6-5
Taleh MAMMADOV (AZE) df Hanjae CHUNG (KOR), 6-2

1250: We are beginning with the quarterfinals here at the Jordal Amfi arena. He begin with 63kg followed by 67kg and then 87kg

1245: Zurabi DATUNASHVILI (SRB) wrestling ALIRZAEV (RWF) and leads 1-1. He exposes Alirzaev for 2. RWF wants a challenge and the review shows no exposure from Alirzaev. They lose the challenge. Datunashvili leads 4-1. Two points and caution against the Serb for not wrestling. But that will be it. 4-3 win for Datunashvili

1217: Huge pin! Geraei was trailing but he gets a fall over Shimoyamada. Incredible turnaround by the Olympic champ. He moves on in 67kg

1215: Shimoyamada with a huge four and he leads Geraei 6-1 now with two minutes remaining! Iran has challenged two calls but cancelled both. Yellow card to the coach

1205: Olympic champion Mohammadreza GERAEI (IRI) is making his way to the mat! He is wrestling Tsuchika SHIMOYAMADA (JPN). Shimoyamada is called passive but he gets an exposure on Geraei and will lead 2-1. 

1200: Stig BERGE (NOR), a legend! The crowd is up on its feet as Berge waves to them in what could be his final bout of the career. He goes down 3-1 against Lenur TEMIROV (UKR). If the Ukrainian goes to repechage, Berge may get to wrestle again 

1140: Kristoffer BERG (SWE) wins! The Sweden wrestler beats Sunil KUMAR (IND) 7-3. Excellent win for him at 87kg

1115: At 67kg, Nazir ABDULLAEV (RWF) and Sebastian NAD (SRB) have won their respective bouts. Abdullaev goes past Krisztian VANCZA (HUN), 4-1 while Nad has a 3-1 win over Elmer MATTILA (FIN)

1100: Morten THORESEN (NOR) joins Berg to win another for Norway. He beats Diego MARTINEZ DE LEIJA (MEX) 5-3 after getting the point for passivity and the exposure. Huge win

1045: It was difficult day for RWF Friday but a great start for them. Ibragim LABAZANOV (RWF) beats NEERAJ (IND), 8-0. At the same weight class, Lenur TEMIROV (UKR) moves on after a 9-0 win over Perica DIMITRIJEVIC (SRB).

1030: Home fans are ecstatic as Stig BERGE (NOR) begins the day for them with a 3-3 thrilling win over Hrachya POGHOSYAN (ARM). The cheers are the loudest.

1015: Are you excited for the final full day action at the senior World Championships in Oslo? We have some terrific Greco-Roman action beginning in 15 minutes


Snyder was better prepared at Olympics: Sadulaev after 'easy' win to 5th World title

By Vinay Siwach

OSLO, Norway (October 8) -- They had not wrestled each other for three years since that night in Budapest but now they faced each other twice in two months. Abdulrashid SADULAEV (RWF) and Kyle SNYDER (USA) put on a show at the Tokyo Olympics in August and this week in Oslo, Norway. Sadulaev, who lost to the American in 2017 Worlds, avenged that loss at the 2018 Budapest edition. A third bout was expected in Nursultan but Snyder lost in the semifinal while Sadulaev reached the final.

The 1-1 tie was broken in Tokyo, the sport's grandest stage, when Sadulaev beat Snyder 7-0 to claim his second Olympic gold. So when the two met in Oslo, it was a question of Snyder keeping up with the Russian Tank or Sadulaev making it an one-sided affair.

"I really wanted to win in Oslo, because five-time world champion sounds better than four-time champion," Sadulaev said.

He did become a five-time world champion when he beat Snyder 6-0 in the 97kg final and also led the Russian Wrestling Federation to yet another team title win at the World Championships. The fact that it came down to this bout to decide the title was history repeating itself. Back in 2017, it was the same case but Snyder then defeated a new-to-97kg Sadulaev and claimed the title for USA.

"Years of work pays off and thank God I won again," Sadulaev said. "I always have tough matches with Snyder. I could barely get off the mat at the Olympics, today I was tired at the end, but everything went well."

Sadulaev took some time to catch his breath after the bout in Tokyo and sat matside before finally leaving the arena. But in Oslo, his conditioning looked better and a change in strategy helped him pull off the win with ease.

"In Tokyo, I immediately began to attack, but here in the first period I decided to see what he would do," he said. "I understood his tactics, and in the second period I did not let him take the lead."

Now a five-time world champion Sadulaev explained more about his approach to a 'Synderlaev' bout and said he doesn't really plan for a bout against his American opponent.

"I don't have any special tactic for the matches against Snyder," Sadulaev said. "I know he is trying to wear me out. So I was trying to make him wrestle my way and not let him set his own rules. In the end, I noticed that he got more worn out than me.

"Personally, I think he was better prepared physically and mentally at the Olympics. I was more tired there. It was easier to win here." 

Sadulaev had a 5-0 lead after the first period. Snyder was called for passivity and as soon as the activity clocked ended, the RWF wrestler pounced with a takedown to increase the lead and then exposed the American with a gut. Snyder did try to attack but was called passive for his lack of activity and won 6-0.

Asked whether this was the most difficult win for him, Sadulaev said that the 2018 win in Budapest still remains a special win for him given that it was a revenge bout.

"Then I had been waiting for that match for a whole year, I wanted to take revenge," he said. "And at the Olympics or today, I didn’t expect to wrestle with him. Here, the most important thing was to win the gold medal of the World Championship. Of course, it's nice that our rivalry with Snyder makes people more interested in our sport."

Despite leading the head-to-head tie 3-1, Sadulaev believes that it won't be easy going forward to wrestle Snyder. "Before the third match, we could not meet for three years, but now it is the second match in two months. There will be no undefeated wrestler, sooner or later everyone loses, it's just that now is my time." 

Sadulaev injured his knee right before the Olympics and it was doubted that he would struggle with the injury. But he said that he would have fought in the Olympics even if he had no leg.

"I have not yet fully recovered from the injury, but in Oslo I felt better than in Tokyo," he said. "I think that now I deserve a little rest and I will heal. My personal coach Shamil OMAROV is next to me - he is like my father, my elder brother during competitions and training camps, and he prepares me in a special way for each bout."

It is still unclear when the new season will start for the star wrestler but he said that till he is healthy, he will continue wrestling at the World Championships with no target on how many medals he wants to win at the megaevent.

"I want to enjoy the victory and have a little rest, and then I will think," he said. "With the help of God there will be no injuries, there will be no problems. I will wrestle for as long as I have strength and health. I am not planning to leave the sport before Paris Olympics. I will keep preparing for the upcoming tournaments.

"For now I will go for a vacation. I will spin the globe and go wherever my finger points."

Sadulaev was leading a young team to Oslo with only him and Tokyo bronze medalist Artur NAIFANOV (RWF) wrestling at the event. Tokyo Olympics champions Zavur UGUEV (RWF) and Zaurbek SIDAKOV (RWF) decided to skip the Oslo event. 65kg bronze medalist Gazhdimurad RASHIDOV (RWF) was also missing from the event.

The 26-year-old said that it brought added responsibility to him and explained that the experience of wrestling at the World Championships will be invaluable for the team.

"The longer I wrestle, the more responsibility it brings," he said. "Before, no one knew my wrestling style, today everyone knows how I wrestle, and I have to work hard to keep winning.

"I am glad that the number of world champions in Russia has increased. There are only two Olympians in our team. The rest of the guys are young. Some wrestled worse than they could actually do because we know that it is sometimes more difficult to win the national championships than the world championships. They went through tough trials, came here, but someone lacked experience, anything can happen. I will say one thing that everyone has a great future, the main thing is never giving up."