Turkey Pushes Three into Finals on Second Day of European Juniors

By William May

LIVESTREAM: http://uww.io/NtuBY

ISTANBUL (June 24) – Host Turkey advanced three entries, led by 2014 runner-up Yunus Emre DEDE (120kg), into the gold medal finals for Wednesday evening at the European junior wrestling championships.

Dede will try to improve on his silver medal won in Katowice, Poland and will be joined by teammates Enes USLU (66kg), a 2013 European cadet bronze medal winner, and Mustafa SESSIZ (84kg).

Turkish wrestling fans were not satisfied, however, and left the arena mumbling about the one that got away in the morning session.

Former world cadet team member Sezgin PISMISOGLU (55kg) edged 2014 cadet European champion Afgan KHASHALOV (AZE), 5-4, in his opening bout.

He then appeared to pin last year’s bronze medal winner Salim NAIM MIKYAY (BUL) in the quarterfinals but Naim Mikyay squirmed out of the hold, touching off a firestorm of protests from the irate fans.  The Bulgarian prevailed, 15-10, to advance to the final while Pismisoglu is left to wrestle for a bronze medal.

Meanwhile, Russia, which won all four gold medals the previous evening, stumbled on the second day of competition at Bagcilar Sports Complex and placed “only” two into the championship bouts.

Ibragim ILYASOV (55kg), winner of the prestigious Ziolkowski tourney in Poland last summer, advanced to the final by winning four bouts all inside of three minutes and will face Naim Mikyay for the gold medal. Copa Brazil winner Gadzhi RADZHABOV (84kg) squares off with Sessiz.

Junior world bronze medalist Surkho RASHITKHANOV (BLR) gained momentum throughout the morning session and will face Uslu in the 66kg final.

In the final bout of the championships’ freestyle competition, Dede will face Said GAMIDOV (AZE), who finished in fifth place last year at 96kg and tripped up Zelimkhan KHIZRIEV (RUS) in the semifinals for the fall.

Wednesday evening’s medal matches:

55kg (18 entries)
Gold – Salim NAIM MIKYAY (BUL) v Ibragim ILYASOV (RUS)
Bronze – Sezgin PISMICOGLU (TUR) v Andrii YATSENKO (UKR)

66kg (23 entries)
Gold – Surkho RASHITKHANOV (BLR) v Enes USLU (TUR)
Bronze – Vasyl MIKHAILOV (UKR) v Valentin SANFRATELLO (FRA)
Bronze – Teymur MAMMADOV (AZE) v Avtandil KENTCHADZE (GEO)

84kg (16 entries)
Gold – Gadzhi RADZHABOV (RUS) v Mustafa SESSIZ (TUR)
Bronze – Ghadzhimurad MAGOMEDSAIDOV (AZE) v Krzysztof SADOWIK (POL)
Bronze – Benjamin OPTIZ (GER) v Giorgi CHKHARTISHVILI (GEO)

120kg (9 entries)
Gold – Yunus Emre DEDE (TUR) v Said GAMIDOV (AZE)
Bronze – Aslan MAHMUDOV (GER) v Vitali PESNIAK (BLR)
Bronze – Yaroslav PONOMARENKO (UKR) v Zelimkhan KHIZRIEV (RUS)