U20 Worlds: Alameldin gives Egypt gold; Iran wins team title

By Vinay Siwach

AMMAN, Jordan (August 20) -- Six wrestlers from Egypt have managed to reach a final at a U20 World Championships in the past. None crossed the final hurdle till Sunday.

Moustafa ALAMELDIN (EGY) took it upon himself to create history for Egypt by becoming the first wrestler from his country to win the gold at U20 World Championships as he defeated Gaspar TERTERYAN (ARM), 4-2, in the 67kg final in Amman, Jordan.

Alameldin got a turn from par terre and then defended as if his life depended on it when put in par terre in the second period. He led 3-1 and gave up a stepout in the final second. Amernia challenged the call asking for fleeing but lost which added the extra points to Alameldin's score.

"I didn't want anyone to take advantage against me from par terre," Alameldin said. "I positioned myself properly and remained strong. All I was thinking about was getting this medal."

His run to gold included five thrilling victories, beginning with Luka IVANCIC (CRO). He then faced returning gold medalist Kanan ABDULLAZADE (AZE) but remained unfazed, beating him 7-5. Azat SARIYAR (TUR) was no match as Alameldin reached the semifinal against Ahoura BOUVEIRI PIANI (IRI). A fierce battle saw Alameldin lead 4-0 before Bouveiri made it 5-2 at the break. Alameldin caught Bouveiri in the middle of a turn and scored two before adding two more. The 9-4 score stood till the clock expired.

"The final was very difficult and strong," he said. "However, the second match was the most difficult but I was able to win the gold medal."

The Alameldin win also marks the first time Egypt has won a gold medal at a World Championships after four years. Mohamed EL SAYED (EGY) won gold at the U23 World Championships in 2019.

The U20 African champion had participated in the senior African Championships last year and won silver after losing to Tokyo Olympian Abdelkarim FERGAT (ALG). At the U20 event, he lost to Fayssal BENFREDJ (ALG).

However, he turned it around this year by beating Benfredj 9-0 to become the U20 African champion. He also finished fifth at the Alexandria Ranking Series event. He lost 5-3 to Merey BEKENOV (KAZ) in the opening bout but pinned Tokyo bronze medalist Sailike WALIHAN (CHN) in the repechage. A close 3-2 loss to HUSIYUETU (CHN) in the bronze medal bout saw him finish fifth.

The gold in Amman helped Egypt finish inside the top 10 in the team race which was won by Iran with 162 points, way ahead of the second-placed Georgia which had 89 points.

Armenia will look back at this and two more losses in the bronze-medal bouts as missed opportunities to finish second. It was third with 88 points while Turkiye finished with 81 points in fourth place. Asian powerhouse Kyrgyzstan, which did not bring a full squad, was fifth with 70 points.

While Terteryan lost, his compatriot Suren AGHAJANYAN (ARM) clinched the gold medal at 60kg. For a while, memories of the 2022 U20 World Championships final must have come gushing back to Aghajanyan as he tried to double-arm lock SUMIT (IND). It was a move that cost him the gold medal in 2022.

"Last year, I had a very hurtful loss in the last 20 seconds," Aghajanyan said. "After that, I spent the whole year preparing to win the gold medal. I’ve trained a lot to achieve this."

Saeid ESMAEILI LEIVESI (IRI) got his arm out of that lock and put Suren AGHAJANYAN (ARM) on his back to win 6-6 in 2022. Sumit, however, did not break the lock and despite ending on top of Aghajanyan, got two points. He tried pinning the Armenian but was denied as Aghajanyan defended extraordinarily using the bridge position.

"I was in a risky position in the final match but I was sure I would get out of it," Aghajanyan said referring to the attempted pin by Sumit.

Leading 9-4 at this point, the two wrestlers were called in neutral and Aghajanyan scored a big four to win the gold medal 13-4 and banish the memories of the previous U20 World Championships in which he finished with a silver medal.

While he is still number two in the country at 60kg behind Gevorg GHARIBYAN (ARM), Aghajanyan hopes to climb up the ladder soon.

"I am still the second one on our senior team," he said. "But I will work hard and do my best to become first in my weight class to win the Olympic qualification license."

Alperen BERBER (TUR)Alperen BERBER (TUR) scores a takedown against Yasin YAZDI (IRI) in the 82kg final. (Photo: UWW / Amirreza Aliasgari)

At 82kg, Alperen BERBER (TUR) added a U20 world title a year after winning the U17 gold medal in emphatic style as he beat Yasin YAZDI (IRI) 9-1 in the gold medal bout.

Last year, the 18-year-old lost to Alireza MOHMADIPIANI (IRI) 8-2 in the semifinals but returned to win the bronze medal. He left nothing to chance, using four strong gut wrenches from par terre in the second period to complete his victory.

The win would come as a relief for Berber as he struggled at the start of the year, finishing seventh at the U23 European Championships. But he participated in the Bishkek Ranking Series and won a silver after losing to Mohamadipiani in the final in June. Two weeks later he won silver the U20 European Championships.

In his earlier bouts, Berber defeated Wojciech IWANOWSKI (POL) 10-0, Ivan CHMYR (UKR) 3-1 in the quarterfinals and Data CHKHAIDZE (GEO) 8-0 in the semifinals, widening the gap from their previous bout which ended 3-1.

Imran ALIEV (AIN)Imran ALIEV (AIN) finished the 72kg final in 2 minutes and 19 seconds. (Photo: UWW / Amirreza Aliasgari)

Imran ALIEV (AIN) captured the gold medal at 72kg in just two minutes and 19 seconds as he gut wrenched Levente LEVAI (HUN). He scored a takedown to open his scoring before Levai was called for inactivity, giving one more point to Aliev. It took a little effort but Aliev got three strong turns to clinch the gold.

Aliev was clearly the most dominant wrestler of the tournament as he won all five of his bouts via technical superiority. Apart from the 9-0 win over Levai in the final, he beat Anri PUTKARADZE (GEO), 9-0, in the semifinal, Seyedmohammadmahdi MIRI (IRI), 10-1, in the quarterfinals, Ankit GULIA (IND), 11-3, in the pre-quarterfinals and Imur TEMIRBEKOV (KGZ), 8-0, in the qualification round.

Abubakar KHASLAKHANAU (AIN)Abubakar KHASLAKHANAU (AIN) celebrates after winning the 97kg final. (Photo: UWW / Amirreza Aliasgari)

The final gold of the night was won by Abubakar KHASLAKHANAU (AIN) as he defeated 2022 U17 world champion Gor AYVAZYAN (GEO), 8-0, in three minutes and 40 seconds.

Ayvazyan was called passive in the first period and Khaslakhanau scored a correct throw and reverse lift to make it 5-0. Using his strength to rattle Ayvazyan, the AIN wrestler scored two stepouts before the 30-second break.

A stepout 40 seconds into the second period gave Khaslakhanau the gold medal.




BRONZE: Amirreza DEHBOZORGI (IRI) df. Saifulla KURMAN (KAZ), 9-0

GOLD: Moustafa ALAMELDIN (EGY) df. Gaspar TERTERYAN (ARM), 4-2

BRONZE: Arslanbek SALIMOV (POL) df. Nestori MANNILA (FIN), 4-0

GOLD: Imran ALIEV (AIN) df. Levente LEVAI (HUN), 9-0

BRONZE: Anri PUTKARADZE (GEO) df. Seyedmohammadmahdi MIRI (IRI), 5-1
BRONZE: Muhammed GOCMEN (TUR) df. Aaron BELLSCHEIDT (GER), 5-4

GOLD: Alperen BERBER (TUR) df. Yasin YAZDI (IRI), 9-1

BRONZE: Imam ALIEV (AIN) df. Ruben GEVORGYAN (ARM), via fall (4-0)


BRONZE: Rostislav COVALI (MDA) df. Arshak GEGHAMYAN (ARM), via fall (5-5)


Amman to host U17 Worlds; Novi Sad gets U17, U20 Euros

By United World Wrestling Press

CORSIER-SUR-VEVEY, Switzerland (February 23) -- United World Wrestling has reallocated the U17 World Championships to Amman, Jordan.

The 2024 U17 Worlds were originally scheduled to be held in Argentina from August 19 to 25 but UWW was forced to change the host due to the political situation in the country. The tournament will now be held in Amman on the same dates i.e. August 19-25, 2024.

The U17 and U20 European Championships were also shifted with Novi Sad, Serbia named as the new host. This will be a joint event with the U17 European Championships running from June 24 to 30 and the U20 European Championships scheduled from July 1 to 7.

The UWW Bureau arrived at this decision after the previous hosts failed to guarantee that the teams and athletes could come and compete without discrimination, in accordance with the fundamental principles and rules of the Olympic Movement.

As previously announced, the 2024 Non-Olympic Senior World Championships will be hosted in Tirana, Albania, from October 28 to 31, immediately following the 2024 U23 World Championships. UWW decided that the wrestlers who compete at the Olympic Games in Paris will not be allowed to register for this event.