Matteo Pellicone Postponed, 2022 Calendar Finalized

By United World Wrestling Press

CORSIER-SUR-VEVEY, Switzerland (January 20) – The United World Wrestling postponed the Matteo Pellicone and announced Almaty and Tunis as the host sites for the remaining pair of '22 Ranking Series events Thursday.

Despite the efforts of the Italian Wrestling Federation to host Rome's Matteo Pellicone on the previously scheduled dates of February 4-7, the latest restrictions due to the Omicron variant proved to be a roadblock in hosting the event.

The tournament will now be held June 22-25 in Rome, Italy preceding the U20 European Championships, which begin June 27 at the Pala Pellicone.

In the same meeting, the Bureau finalized the '22 Ranking Series calendar. In their continued efforts to spread the Ranking Series events worldwide, United World Wrestling selected Africa and Asia as host continents for the remaining pair of 2022 events.

Apart from the season opener Ranking event – the Yasar Dogu – in Istanbul, Turkey (February 24-27), the second event will be held in Almaty, Kazakhstan (June 2-5). The Matteo Pellicone will be the third event (June 22-25), with Tunis, Tunisia being the final Ranking Series stop of the season (July 14-17).

Matteo PelliconeThe Matteo Pellicone Ranking event will now be held on June 22-25 in Rome, Italy. (Photo: UWW / Kadir Caliskan)

Ranking Series Calendar 2022:

1st Ranking Series: February 24-27, Istanbul (TUR)
2nd Ranking Series: June 2-5, Almaty (KAZ)
3rd Ranking Series: June 22-25, Rome (ITA)
4th Ranking Series: July 14-17, Tunis (TUN)

"We really think that these adjustments will benefit the sport and for the competitions organized every year," UWW President Nenad LALOVIC said while announcing the changes. "Points will be allocated to the wrestlers, depending on their rank at these events. At the end of the year, the athletes who will have the highest number of points will become the best wrestlers of the year."

Updated Ranking System

Throughout '21, UWW has worked tirelessly to find improvements in the competition system. As a result, the Technical Commission and Bureau Members analyzed the current system and several other topics.

One of the most significant changes made by the Bureau was the approval of the updates to the current competition's ranking and seeding system.

UWW decided to add the XIX Mediterranean Games in Oran, Algeria (June 27-30) as a trial event to award ranking points to wrestlers participating in the Games. Other Regional Games could potentially be added to the Ranking system on a case-by-case basis. However, the final ranking points will only be awarded based on results in four out of the five events for the athletes who compete in Regional Games. The Olympics, Senior World and Continental Championships points remain unaffected.

The following competitions will determine the ranking of a wrestler:

Ranking Series (international tournaments selected by UWW)
Senior Continental Championships
Senior World Championships or Olympic Games
XIX Mediterranean Games (eligible wrestlers)

"We encourage all your athletes to compete during these events," Lalovic said. "The [ranking] points will serve them when we establish the seeds for the Senior Continental and World Championships."

The new rankings have been updated on uww.org, with wrestlers holding points from the Tokyo Olympic Games and Oslo World Championships.

Another significant decision was changing the number of seeds at different competitions. As a result, the Bureau approved to have eight seeds for the Senior World Championships and the Olympic Games instead of the previous four.

Similarly, the number of seeded wrestlers at the '22 Senior Continental Championships will now be four instead of two. The seeds will be determined by the Ranking Series events organized before the aforementioned competitions but also by taking into account the points earned at the 2021 Senior World Championships and the Tokyo Olympic Games.

World CupThe 2018 freestyle World Cup was hosted by the USA in Iowa City. (Photo: UWW / Tony Rotundo)

USA, Azerbaijan to host '22 World Cups

In a first, UWW will host a combined Freestyle and Women's Wrestling World Cup in Iowa, USA.

Iowa will host the combined World Cup for two consecutive years – 2022 and 2023 – marking a new beginning in the wrestling calendar. This will also be the second time Iowa has hosted the Freestyle World Cup. The legendary Carver-Hawkeye Arena on the campus of the University of Iowa hosted the '18 World Cup.

After a four-year absence, wrestling will return to Baku, as the Bureau provisionally approved the Azerbaijan capital to host the Greco-Roman World Cup pending a venue inspection visit. The tournament will be held on November 5-6.

Rounding off the calendar was the selection of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, as the host city for the Senior Asian Championships (April 19 to 24).


Rankings See Big Shifts After Yasar Dogu

By Vinay Siwach

ISTANBUL, Turkey (March 1) -- The first Ranking Series event on the calendar is in the rearview, and after the event, several wrestlers have improved their rankings, which will ultimately be used for the seedings at the 2022 Continental and World Championships. 

This year, UWW will award points according to the new ranking system. 

The top eight wrestlers who acquired the most points from the four Ranking Series events and the Continental Championships will earn a seed for September's World Championships, held in Belgrade, Serbia. 

As of now, wrestlers who competed and subsequently earned points from the Tokyo Olympic Games and Oslo World Championships fill out the top-20 in the rankings heading into Istanbul.

Updated Ranking Series Point Distribution:
1st - 8000
2nd - 6400
3rd - 5200
5th - 4000
7th - 3520
8th - 3200
9th - 2800
10th - 2480
11th - 800
12th - 100
13th - 75
14th - 50
15th - 25
16th - 13

The number of points awarded at a competition will also be impacted by the number of wrestlers entered in each bracket. In weight categories with 2-5 competitors, ranking points will be reduced in half and only the top three finishers will be awarded points. In brackets that feature 6-12 participants, no additional points will be added. For weight categories with 13-16 entries, an additional 3000 points will be given. For categories with 16+ wrestlers entered, an additional 5000 will be awarded.

Additional points:
1 participant - no ranking or additional points
2-5 participants - ranking points reduced in half and only the first three will be awarded
6-12 participants - no additional points
13-16 participants - 3000 additional points to all wrestlers
16+ participants - 5000 additional points to all wresters


There were no changes in the top-10 but gold medalist Adem UZUN (TUR) debuts at No.11 with 8000 points, while silver medalist Amangali BEKBOLATOV (KAZ) enters the rankings at No. 13 with 6400 points.

No changes in the top-10.

Taleh MAMMADOV (AZE) moved up one sport after Istanbul. He went from being sixth to fifth after winning a bronze medal. He earned 5200 points, which moved him from 25000 points to 30200 points.

Gold medalist Islomjon BAKHRAMOV (UZB) entered the rankings at No.13 with 8000 points.

No changes in the top-10

Kristupas SLEIVA (LTU) was ranked third with 31000 points. He moved to the second spot ahead of Sergei KUTUZOV (RWF) with a 9400-point silver-medal finish.

Ulvu GANIZADE (AZE) moved from eighth to seventh with a 10th-place finish. He's earned 5480 points, enough to take him past Valentin PETIC (MDA).

Mikko PELTOKANGAS (FIN) moved into the top-10 from 12th with a fifth-place finish. He received 7000 points for his finish, bringing his tally to 15200 points.

World silver medalist Sanan SULEYMANOV (AZE) moved to the third spot after his silver medal in Istanbul. He had 37000 points but added 9400 points, bringing his overall total to 46400 points.

Viktor NEMES (SRB) broke into the top-10 after his fifth-place finish. He was ranked 12th previously but received 7000 points.

Rafig HUSEYNOV (AZE) and Burhan AKBUDAK (TUR) are ranked first and second, respectively. The two met in the semifinals in Istanbul, with Akbudak winning the 8000-point gold, while Huseynov picked up 5200 points for bronze. The Azerbaijan wrestler remains first with 50200 points, while Akbudak is second with 45000 points.

World champion Zurabi DATUNASHVILI (SRB) improved his points tally from 79200 points to 85600 points with a silver medal. Arkadiusz KULYNYCZ (POL) was ranked seventh [31000 points] but is now sixth after finishing seventh and getting 3520 points.

Young star and Tokyo fifth-place finisher Arvi SAVOLAINEN (FIN) made a big jump from 12th to sixth place with a silver medal. He scored 11400 points and moved from 23000 points to now 34400 points.

Riza KAYAALP (TUR) reached the fifth spot from seventh after he won a bronze medal. He had 34200 points, and the additional 8200-point bronze gave him 42200 points. 

Osman YILDIRIM (TUR) also moved two spots from ninth to seventh after the gold win and 11000 points. He now has 36000 points to his name.

Silver medalist and Kayaalp-slayer Beka KANDELAKI (AZE) entered top-10 at the No. 10 position with his silver medal. He had 17000 points but now has 26400 points.


World bronze medalist Horst LEHR (GER) missed out on earning a medal but still picked up 5100 points for finishing 12th in a bracket that had more than 16 participants. That helped him jump from his seventh position to fifth.

Ulukbek ZHOLDOSHBEKOV (KGZ) jumped seven places to break into the top-10 at 61kg. The former U23 world champion won a bronze medal and collected 10200 points. He was ranked 16th before the Yasar Dogu with 5400 points, but ended with 15600 points and is now ninth in the rankings.

Gold medalist Ravi KUMAR (IND), who is competing up a weight from his Tokoyo silver-medal winning weight of 57kg, added 13000 points and jumped up into the 12th spot.

World champion Zagir SHAKHIEV (RWF) is the new number-one ranked wrestler at 65kg. He won a silver medal in Istanbul and overtook the top spot from Olympic champion Takuto OTOGURO (JPN). He now has 56400 points as he added 11400 for his silver.

Otoguro [51000 points] has now slipped to third as Tulga TUMUR OCHIR (MGL) improved to second with a fifth-place finish. He entered the competition with 44500 points but now has 53500 points after the additional 9000 points.

Rohit ROHIT (IND) improved his ranking by one place. He grabbed 8200 points for his eighth-place finish and sit No. 8. Morteza GHIASI CHEKA (IRI) also moved from 16th to 13th with a 12th-placed finish and 5100 points.

World silver medalist Ernazar AKMATALIEV (KGZ) finished seventh in Istanbul but moved to the number-one ranking at 70kg after collecting 8520 points. He was ranked second with 37000 points but now leads world champion Magomedmurad GADZHIEV (POL) by 520 points.

Bronze medalist at Yasar Dogu, Zurabi IAKOBISHVILI (GEO), maintained his third position with 10200 points. He now has 41400 points.

Silver medalist James GREEN (USA) improved from seventh to fifth after leaving Istanbul with 11400 points. He now has 29600 points.

Gold medalist Amir YAZDANI (IRI) debuted at 70kg with 13000 points and is now ranked 11th.

Viktor RASSADIN (RWF) won bronze and has entered the rankings at 12th with 10200 points.

The two fifth-placed wrestlers -- Levan KELEKHSASHVILI (GEO) and Aliakbar FAZLIKHALILI (IRI) -- debut at 14th and 15th with 9000 points each. Since the Georgian had more classification points than Fazlikhalili in the tournament, he is ranked above the Iranian.

Fazli ERYILMAZ (TUR) broke into the top-three with a silver-medal finish in Istanbul. He was awarded 11400 points, enough to take him from the previous eighth position to third. He now has 42400 points.

Osman GOCEN (TUR) made a big leap from the 15th position to the seventh after he won the 86kg title. He now has 26500 points, adding 13000 points to his earlier total of 13000. Akhmed AIBUEV (FRA) also jumped from 14th to ninth after he finished fifth in Istanbul and picked up 9000 points. He now has 24500 points.

Ahmad BAZRIGHALEH (IRI) and Erhan YAYLACI (TUR) were the two wrestlers who improved their ranking at 92kg. Bazrighaleh debuts in this month's rankings with 11000 points for his gold medal in Istanbul.

Yaylaci, who won silver, added 9400 points to his previous 6600 points. That took him from 14th rank to ninth as he now has 16000 points.

Gold medalist at 97kg Mohammad MOHAMMADIAN (IRI) made a marginal jump of three spots from 17th to 14th despite getting 11000 points for the win. He now has 16400 points.

Taha AKGUL (TUR) and Lkhagvagerel MUNKHTUR (MGL) won the gold and silver, respectively, giving them 13000 and 11400 points. They remained third and fourth in the rankings.

The Turkish wrestler now has 78200 points but is still behind number two Geno PETRIASHVILI (GEO) who has 78400 points. Munkhtar now has 65400 points but no change in the rank.

Bronze medalist Yusup BATIRMURZAEV (KAZ) made a big jump from 22nd rank to 12th as he collected 10200 points. He had 6200 points but now has 16400 points to be placed 12th. Oleg BOLTIN (KAZ) improved from seventh to sixth with 8520 points for his eighth-place finish in Istanbul.

Gennadij CUDINOVIC (GER, who was previously ranked 13th,  jumped to eighth. He started with 23200 points and was awarded 8200 points for finishing eighth in the competition.

Women's Freestyle

Emilia VUC's (ROU) gold-medal win in Turkey moved her to the fourth position. She previously sat at No. 11 with 13000 points. She now has 42600 points.

Miglena SELISHKA (BUL) [31700 points] had a chance to be fourth but she missed out on winning gold. She received 10200 points for her bronze and is now fifth with 41900 points.

It was a similar case for Otgonjargal DOLGORJAV (MGL) [31000 points] and Nadezhda SOKOLOVA (RWF) [31000 points]. They remain seventh and eighth, respectively, despite winning bronze and finishing eighth.

Sarra HAMDI (TUN) finished 10th, which gave her 7480 points. That took her from 16th to 13th. She now has 20980 points.

Olympic bronze medalist Bolortuya BAT OCHIR (MGL) managed to topple Mayu MUKAIDA (JPN) from the weight's No. 1 by winning the gold in Istanbul. She had 43200 points but an additional 13000 points brought her total to 56200, enough to move past Mukaida's 51000 points.

World silver medalist Iulia LEORDA (MDA) won a bronze and improved from sixth to fourth adding 10200 points to her previous 37000 points.

Junior world champion Emma MALMGREN (SWE) moved from 15th to 11th thanks to her ninth-place finish and 7800 points. Annika WENDLE (GER) moved from 17th to 12th as she finished seventh and got 8520 points.

Mehlika OZTURK (TUR) moved from tenth to seventh after collecting 8520 points for her eighth-place, while gold medalist Jacarra WINCHESTER (USA) is 11th with 11000 points.

Olympic bronze medalist Evelina NIKOLOVA (BUL) added 13000 points for her gold medal and consolidated her second position in the rankings. She now has 64200 points. Tokyo silver medalist Iryna KURACHKINA (BLR) was fifth with 41400 points but is now third after her 10200-point bronze.

Veronika CHUMIKOVA (RWF) moved from eighth to sixth after winning a bronze medal and 10200 points. She now has a total of 35200 points.

Alyona KOLESNIK (AZE), previously ranked tenth, moved to seventh with a bronze medal. She had 14300 points before the tournament but now has 22500 points.

Jowita WRZESIEN (POL) broke into the top-10 with a bronze medal and 8200 points. She is now ranked tenth from her earlier 12th as she now has 16400 points.

Taybe YUSEIN (BUL), who had 34200 points, jumped to the third-ranking after she collected 9000 points. She now has 43200 points, the same as fourth-ranked Kayla MIRACLE (USA), but is ranked third because the USA wrestler is yet to participate in a Ranking Series event this year.

Lais NUNES DE OLIVEIRA (BRA) was ranked eighth-ranked with 29600 points but is now fifth with 37400 points as she finished ninth and collected 7800 points.

Veranika IVANOVA (BWF) entered top-10 from No. 15 with a fifth-place finish and 9000 points. She had 15500 points but is now at 24500 points, 500 points shy of ninth place.

Forrest MOLINARI (USA) improved to the second rank at 65kg after she won the gold. Her points jumped from 31000 to 44000.

Dinara KUDAEVA SALIKHOVA (RWF) moved from tenth to seventh as she earned 5050 points for her 14th place finish. She now has 19350 points.

Kriszta INCZE (ROU) entered top-10 after a seventh-place finish. She picked up 8520 points which took her tally from 8200 points to 16720 points.

Silver medalist Mallory VELTE (USA) debuts at 13th place with 11400 points, while two bronze medalists Khadija JLASSI (TUN) and Emma BRUNTIL (USA) enter at 14th and 15th, respectively, with 10200 points.

Jlassi grabbed four extra classification points pushing her ahead of Bruntil.

Meerim ZHUMANAZAROVA (KGZ) is now the top-ranked wrestler at 68kg. Despite winning the silver in Istanbul, the 6400 points were enough to take her tally to 83600 points, 3600 points more than Tamyra MENSAH STOCK (USA), who has 80000 points.

Olympic silver medalist Blessing OBORUDUDU (NGR) won gold but remains third with 64400 points.

Adela HANZLICKOVA (CZE) moved from 10th to seventh with a bronze medal and 5200 points. She now has 28200 points.

Zhamila BAKBERGENOVA (KAZ) won the gold for 8000 points, tying her with top-ranked Masako FURUICHI (JPN). But as Furuichi finished with gold at the World Championships and Bakbergenova silver, the Kazak wrestler remains second.

World bronze medalist Anna SCHELL (GER) retained her third place with a silver medal, while Buse CAVUSOGLU TOSUN (TUR) fumbled her shot at jumping to No. 3 in the rankings after she finished fifth on home soil.

Kseniia BURAKOVA (RWF) moved from 13th to 11th with 4000 points for her fifth-place finish.

Second-ranked Aiperi MEDET KYZY (KGZ) closed the gap against top-ranked Adeline GRAY (USA) [86400 points] after winning a gold and 13000 points in Istanbul. She now has 67000 points

World bronze medalist Samar HAMZA (EGY) had 43300 points and needed to finish ninth or better to overtake Olympic champion Aline FOCKEN (GER) for the fourth spot. She finished ninth and took home 7800 points, moving past Focken for the fourth rank.

Francy RAEDELT (GER) won a bronze medal and jumped from 18th to 12th, thanks to the 10200 points. She now has 18400 points.