Susaki, Abakarov, Makhmudov, Sharshenbekov named UWW's History Makers of the Year
Wednesday, December 21, 2022 - 13:56 By Eric Olanowski
CORSIER-SUR-VEVEY, Switzerland (December 21) -- After their history-making feats in 2022, Yui SUSAKI (JPN), Zelimhan ABAKAROV (ALB), Akzhol MAKHMUDOV (KGZ) and Zholaman SHARSHENBEKOV (KGZ). have been named UWW History Makers of the year.
Coming into the season, Susaki had already won Olympic gold and world titles at the U17, U20 and senior levels. In October, the Japanese superstar grabbed U23 world gold and became the first-ever wrestler to win wrestling’s Grand Slam.
Abakarov, at 29 years old, capitalized on his first opportunity to wrestle at the world championships with five dominant wins – highlighted by a 7-2 win over defending world champ Thomas GILMAN (USA) en route to becoming Albania’s first-ever world champ.
Heading into Belgrade, Kyrgyzstan was 0-3 in gold medal matches at the senior world championships. But Makhmudov only needed 2:06 to rewrite Kyrgyzstan’s history books with a one-sided 8-0 win over Zoltan LEVAI (HUN) in the 77kg finals.
48 hours later, Sharshenbekov followed in his countryman’s footsteps and used Makhmudov’s gold as motivation to win Kyrgyzstan’s second-ever world title. After falling twice in the world finals, there was no way he would to be denied a third shot to win world gold.
Your 2022 History Makers of the Year, Susaki, Abakarov, Makhmudov and Sharshenbekov.