#WrestleOslo: Miyaji Stuns Olympic Champ Mensah Stock as Japan Rolls On
Wednesday, October 6, 2021 - 13:08 By
OSLO, Norway (October 6) -- Akie HANAI (JPN) was still going through her interview when Rin MIYAJI (JPN) joined her in the mixed zone. A surprised Hanai was wondering how did Miyaji come back so early after her semifinal. But when she was informed that Miyaji pinned Tokyo Olympic and world champion Taymara MENSAH STOCK (USA), Hanai could not but hug her teammate with a big smile on her face.
In what is perhaps the biggest upset of the tournament, Miyaji claimed a 21-second pin over Mensah Stock after both the wrestlers were locked in arm-tie. But the USA wrestler squared up and Miyaji cradled her and held her on the back for the fall.
Miyaji was one of the three Japan wrestlers who reached the final Wednesday as Hanai managed to reach the 59kg final while Masako FURUICHI (JPN) entered the 72kg after beating Anna SCHELL (GER).
With that, Japan has sent six wrestlers to the final while nine others are wrestling for medals.
Miyaji, who has ever wrestled at a World Championships before, will wrestle Meerim ZHUMANAZAROVA (KGZ) in the final. The Kyrgyzstan wrestler has to thank her fate for the win as the scorers' had wrongly indicated caution against when there was not.
She gave up a takedown in final 10 seconds to trail 3-3 on criteria but when the mat chairman was about announce the result, the criteria was give to Zhumanazarova as a wrong caution had been added to it.
Hanai also beat an American to reach the 59kg final as Maya NELSON (USA) was not given any chance in a 4-1 defeat. She will face 2018 world silver medalist Bilyana DUDOVA (BUL) in what will a match of close margins. Dudova beat two-time Asian champion Sarita MOR (IND) 3-0 in the semifinals and booked her spot in the final.
But India did get its first-ever women's wrestling Worlds finalists when Anshu MALIK (IND) defeated Solomiia VYNNYK (JPN) 11-0 in the semifinal at 57kg. India has five bronze medals from World Championships but no one ever reached the final.
Maik scored via a series of takedowns and finally a gut wrench and move on to face Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist Helen MAROULIS (USA).
The USA wrestler had a nail-biting finish against U23 world champion Sar NANJO (JPN) before pulling off a 6-4 win. Nanjo was looking for a repeat of Tokyo Olympics where eventual champion Risako KAWAI (JPN) beat Maroulis to stop her from defending her Olympic title which she won in Rio.
Maroulis was given a point for Nanjo's passivity but the Japan wrestler launched a huge throw on the edge and was awarded four. Leading 4-1, Nanjo gave up two before the break.
Then Maroulis began the second period with a takedown and stayed with it until the final whistle. Nanjo's tries of attacking the legs in the end did not work and Maroulis entered the final.
Kazakhstan also had a World Championships finalist when Zhamila BAKBERGENOVA (KAZ) defeated Buse CAVUSOGLU TOSUN (TUR) 13-2 with ease.
Bakbergenova will wrestle for gold against Masako FURUICHI (JPN) who defeat Anna SCHELL (GER), 13-2 and try to stop the Japanese juggernaut of winning gold medals with ease.