NF Roundup: Nov. 16-20
Monday, November 16, 2020 - 17:08 By United World Wrestling Press
Nippon Sport Science University won the freestyle title at the All-Japan Collegiate Championships (Photo: Tateo Yabuki/Japan Wrestling Federation)
Yamaguchi Leads NSSU to Japan Collegiate Freestyle Title
World junior champion Kaiki YAMAGUCHI made a successful move up to 65kg, helping lead Nippon Sport Science University to the team title as one of the school's three gold medalists at the All-Japan Collegiate Championships.
Bakhdaulet ALMENTAY (KAZ) etched his name in Japan wrestling history when the Yamanashi Gakuin University senior captured the 125kg gold to become the ninth four-time champion in the history of the freestyle tournament, which was held Nov. 7-8 in Osaka.
Yuto TAKESHITA, last year's Asian junior champion, won the 57kg gold and Kodai OGAWA triumphed at 61kg as NSSU swept the three lightest weight classes, and had three silver medalists in winning the team title for the 21st time with 71 points.
Takushoku University, with two champions in Takuma TANIYAMA at 70kg and Kojiro SHIGA at 74kg, finished second with 46.
Yamanashi Gakuin picked up a second title as Takuma OTSU, the national senior champion and Asian silver medalist at 92kg, won the 97kg crown, while world U-23 bronze medalist Hayato ISHIGURO of Nihon University repeated as 86kg champion.
Kaiki YAMAGUCHI led NSSU to the Japan collegiate freestyle title (Photo: Tateo Yabuki/Japan Wrestling Federation)
Yamaguchi, the 2018 champion and 2019 runner-up at 61kg -- the weight class in which he won the world junior gold last year in Thailand -- was named the tournament's outstanding wrestler.
He chalked up three technical falls before knocking off defending champion Ryoma ANRAKU of Waseda 3-1 in the semifinals, then edged Shinnosuke SUWAMA of Kokushikan University 2-0 in the final.
Takeshita, the Asian junior champion, pulled off the biggest win of the tournament in the quarterfinals, when he posted a 6-2 win over world junior champion Toshiya ABE of Kokushikan. He took the gold with a 7-0 victory over Senshu University's Daiki ARAKI.
Almantay, coming off winning a third straight Greco title in October, maintained his domination of the college heavyweights, winning three of his four matches by technical fall, including a 10-0 win in the final over NSSU's Haroon ABID of Pakistan. The former world junior bronze medalist did not surrender a point.
By winning a fourth title in a row, Almentay joined a elite group that includes two-time Olympic medalist Kosei AKAISHI (Nihon, 1983-1986) and 2014 world silver medalist Sosuke TAKATANI (Takushoku, 2008-2011), who will be aiming to qualify for a third Olympics in March. Of the nine who have accomplished the feat, he is the fourth from Yamanashi Gakuin.
Kojiro SHIGA claimed the title at 74kg (Photo: Tateo Yabuki/Japan Wrestling Federation)
In the 74kg final, Takushoku's Shiga overwhelming NSSU freshman Yudai TAKAHASHI by 10-0 technical fall for his third straight title in a clash between two of Japan's national team members at the 2019 World Championships in Nur-Sultan.
Shiga, the Asian silver medalist at 70kg, finished seventh in that weight class in Nur-Sultan, while Takahashi dropped down from 79kg, the weight in which he finished second at the All-Japan Championships last year as a high school senior.
The national-level tournament was latest in recent months to be held employing strict restrictions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. That included prohibiting spectators and testing all competitors.
So far, there have been no reports of infections in the weeks following any of the tournaments.
57kg: Yuto TAKESHITA (NSSU) df. Daiki ARAKI (Senshu), 7-0
61kg: Kodai OGAWA (NSSU) df. Keita SHIMIZU (Takushoku), 7-5
65kg: Kaiki YAMAGUCHI (NSSU) df. Shinnosuke SUWAMA (Kokushikan), 2-0
70kg: Takuma TANIYAMA (Takushoku) df. Kazuki SAITO (Meiji) by TF, 10-0, 1:31
74kg: Kojiro SHIGA (Takushoku) df. Yudai TAKAHASHI (NSSU) by TF, 10-0, 3:45
86kg: Hayato ISHIGURO (Nihon) df. Tatsuya SHIRAI (NSSU), 4-1
97kg: Takuma OTSU (Yamanashi Gakuin) df. Keiwan YOSHIDA (Nihon), 8-6
125kg: Bakhdaulet ALMENTAY (Yamanashi Gakuin) df. Haroon ABID (NSSU) by TF, 10-0, 4:19
Coronavirus Crashes Olympic Party for Wrestler-Coach Couple
Despite these most uncertain of times, when the Tokyo Olympics might not even take place, Japanese wrestler Mayu Mukaida has seized control of her situation, preparing step by step for whatever comes next.
Had the global health crisis not disrupted her life and the sports calendar, the 23-year-old would have made her Olympic debut at the games this past summer and then married her coach Shota Shidochi.
"I want no regrets later, whether the Olympics go ahead or not. I will prepare the best I can," Mukaida told Kyodo News in a recent interview.
In February, Mukaida and Shidochi moved their training base to Tokyo from Aichi Prefecture in central Japan to get used to the host city environment, but in March the Olympics were postponed until 2021.
After the initial disappointment of having to wait another year for her shot at Olympic glory as well as her wedding day, Mukaida finally came to terms with the reality of having to re-plan everything in August.
Vinesh Phogat Gets Surprise Help in Solving Mukaida Problem
"But the tenacious Indian champion and her coach has now got a helping hand from Japan to solve the puzzle named Mayu Mukaida. During their training trip in Norway, Vinesh who has already qualified for Tokyo Olympics with the help of her Hungarian coach Woller Akos trained with multiple time world champion Haruna Okuno of Japan. Okuno who fights in the same category as Mukaida in 53kg recently won the Under 23 world championship and also has two senior world championship titles to her name. Training sessions with Okuno has given Vinesh insight into the wrestling style of her nemesis Mukaida. According to Vinesh’s coach Akos practicing in the Japanese style, wrestling has really helped the Indian champion."
FULL STORY: https://wrestlingtv.in/vinesh-phogat-gets-helping-hand-from-japan-itself-to-solve-the-mayu-mukaida-puzzle/
UWW Launches Legends v. Stars Freestyle Bracket on Instagram
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