Asian Championships Day 4 Women's Wrestling Finals Set

By Ken Marantz & Vinay Siwach

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan (April 14) -- Women's Wrestling will continue at the Asian Championships on day four with world champion Aisuluu TYNYBEKOVA (KGZ) wrestling in front of the home crowd for the first time. Japan will look to build on its three gold medals from day three.


14:27: Anastassiya PANASSOVICH (KAZ) was frantic at the start of the 72kg semifinal against HARSHITA (IND) but the Indian remained calm. Harshita with a double-leg and gets the four-pointer. Panassovich is put on the activity clock in the second period, making it 5-0 for Harshita. No more points in the semifinal as Harshita enters the 72kg final with a 5-0 win.

14:24: Qian JIANG (CHN), an Asian junior champion in 2019, will get a chance for a first senior gold by advancing to the 72kg final with a victory by fall over Bolortungalag ZORIGT (MGL). Jiang had a pair of 4-point takedowns in the match. First, she used a single-leg tackle to send Zoright directly to her back, although the Mongolian rolled through to get 2 points of her own. Jiang then used a 2-on-1 to whip Zorigt down for 4, but finished her off with the fall in 1:08.

14:07: Enkhjin TUVSHINJARGAL (MGL) with a fall over Irina KAZYULINA (KAZ) in the 65kg semifinal with 3:33 left on the clock. In a dramatic turn of events, Kazakhstan challenged for a stepout at 4:14. The result is reversed and Kazakhstan is given a point for stepout and the pin is canceled. Kazyulina with a takedown and a 4-0 lead at the break. Tuvshinjargal gets exposure in the second period to cut the lead to 4-2 and a go-behind soon to lead 4-4 on criteria. Kazyulina is out of steam and Tuvshinjargal has another takedown to lead 6-4. No more scores in the bout and Tuvshinjargal heads into the 65kg final with a 6-4 win.

14:06: Mahiro YOSHITAKE (JPN) will get a chance to improve on her silver-medal performance from a year ago when she barged to a first-period fall over teenager ANTIM (IND) in their 65kg semifinal. Yoshitake, a 2022 world U20 champion, scores a takedown and exposure for a 4-0 lead. She keeps the pressure on and flips Antim onto her back and records the fall at 1:31.

14:02: Aisuluu TYNYBEKOVA (KGZ) sets up the highly anticipated clash in the 62kg final with Motoki, after using her counter lifts to great effect to build a big lead in a 13-3 victory over Tserenchimed SUKHEE (MGL). Her lone takedown in the second period led to a pair of rolls that ended the match.

13:56: Sakura MOTOKI (JPN) was slow off the blocks but she pins MANISHA (IND) after the Indian was called for fleeing and was put in forced par terre. An arm-bar and pin for the victory.

13:51: Three-time world champion Tsugumi SAKURAI (JPN) is taken into the second period by Laura ALMAGANBETOVA (KAZ) in their 57kg semifinal, but the outcome is as expected as the Japanese records a fall with just over two minutes left. Sakurai gets an activity point, then fights through Almaganbetova's defenses late in the first period to score a takedown and two exposures for a 7-0 lead. In the second period, she gets a single-leg takedown and gains a lace lock. But instead of rolling, she lifts and pressures Almaganbetova onto her back for the fall.

13:44: Yongxin FENG (CHN) with that super strong Chinese gut wrench to take out Gantuya ENKHBAT (MGL) 10-0 in just 30 seconds. Feng will wrestle for the 57kg gold medal.

13:42: ANJU (IND) into the 53kg final! A stepout and fleeing from Chun LEI (CHN) gives Anju a 2-0 lead. But Lei answers with a low single and gut wrench to take a 6-2 lead at the break. Anju gets a stepout and another point for Lei's passivity in the second period to close the gap to 6-4. With 20 seconds left, Anju hits a cradle for two and two and holds Lei in danger as the clock expires. China challenged the call but lost and Anju won 9-6.

13:37: Ji Hyang KIM (PRK) is into the 53kg final with a victory by fall over Thi My Trang NGUYEN (VIE). Kim, a 2019 Asian cadet champion, gets a pair of takedowns, adding a gut wrench after the first one. Kim then uses a fireman's carry to put Nguyen directly to her back, transitions to a headlock and secures the fall at 2:44.

The semifinals begin at 13:30 local time. Mongolia and India lead with four wrestlers in the semifinals. Japan, China and Kazakhstan have three each in the semifinals. Kyrgyzstan, Vietnam and DPR Korea enter one each.

12:58: Returning silver medalist Sumire NIIKURA (JPN) takes back the lead in the second period, only to lose it and suffer a 10-6 defeat by Bolortungalag ZORIGT (MGL) in their 72kg quarterfinal. Niikura led 4-4 on criteria going into the second period when Zorigt scored a takedown with 1:12 left. Niikura came back with a stepout, and a fleeing point tacked on made it 6-6, her advantage. With :24 on the clock, Niikura loses her balance and Zorigt takes advantage to score the go-ahead takedown. A stop on a desperation throw accounts for the final score.

12:50: Qian JIANG (CHN) defies the home crowd and hangs on for a 10-8 victory in her 72kg quarterfinal over Asian Games 68kg silver medalist Nurzat NURTAEVA.

12:47: Paris-bound two-time world medalist Sakura MOTOKI (JPN) gets started at 62kg with a 10-0 victory over Arian CARPIO (PHI) to advance to the semifinals. Motoki opens with a double-leg takedown. She then uses a nice ankle pick for 2, then applies the lace lock and ends the match with three quick rolls.

12:41: Tserenchimed SUKHEE (MGL), a three-time bronze medalist and 2015 world silver medalist, is into the 62kg semifinals with a 5-0 victory over LILI (CHN), a world bronze medalist last year at 65kg.

12:40: A U20 world bronze medalist HARSHITA (IND) rolls to a 13-3 win over Ozoda ZARIPBOEVA (UZB) to enter the 72kg semifinals.

12:36: In a battle of 2021 world bronze medalists (in different weight classes), Gantunya ENKHBAT (MGL) used a whizzer counter to great effect to defeat SARITA (IND) 8-4. Ehkhbat's 4-point throw off a whizzer in the first period had her ahead on criteria when Sarita tied the match in the second period. As Sarita pressed for a go-ahead point, Ekhbat hit another whizzer for 4 at the buzzer.

12:31: In one of the wildest bouts of the session with the unlikeliest of finishes, MANISHA (IND) came out a winner on cautions over Su Gyong CHOE (PRK) in their 62kg quarterfinal. Manisha overcame an 8-2 deficit to lead 10-8, and then a flurry of action, including a 4-point takedown by Choe, put the Korean up 13-12. With 10 seconds left, Manisha charged Choe out of the ring, gaining a stepout point and a fleeing point to lead 14-13. But that was the third caution on Choe, ending the match.

12:30: Aisuluu TYNYBEKOVA (KGZ) may be donning a new hairstyle but her dominance on the mat is still old. The world champion entertains the home crowd with a victory by fall over Subeen JO (KOR) and enters the 62kg semifinal.

12:25: Irina KAZYULINA (KAZ), a bronze medalist back in 2018, hangs on for a 4-3 victory over Dinora RUSTAMOVA (UZB) to advance to the 65kg semifinals.

12:23: A stepout to start but ANTIM (IND) gets a flurry of takedowns and counters to beat Dilnaz SAZANOVA (KGZ) 11-0 in four minutes and 19 seconds and advance to the 65kg semifinals.

12:19: Two-time reigning world champion Tsugumi SAKURAI (JPN) opens her campaign at 57kg for a second Asian gold (she also won in 2022) with a 37-second victory in the quarterfinals over Sezim ZHUMANAZAROVA (KGZ). A takedown to a lace lock, four rolls and that was it.

12:17: Thi My Trang NGUYEN (VIE), a U17 Asian bronze medalist, moves into the semifinals of 53kg with a 4-1 win over Yi Jing CHEN (TPE).

12:17: ANJU (IND) has her hands full with Nethmi PORUTHOTAGE (SRI) in their 53kg quarterfinal and trails in the second period. But a 4-point takedown opens the floodgates and the Indian posts a 14-4 victory.

12:08: Yongxin FENG (CHN) with a quick 10-0 win over Hyon Ju YUN (PRK). A strong gut wrench to finish the bout at 57kg.

12:06: Ji Hyang KIM (PRK) is looking impressive at 53kg, rolling to a 12-2 victory over two-time Asian U20 silver medalist Dilshoda MATNAZAROVA (UZB).

12:05: A mixed result for Korea and Kazakhstan on MAt C. In the 62kg bouts, Subeen JO (KOR) pins Tynys DUBEK (KAZ) but in the 57kg bout, Laura ALMAGANBETOVA (KAZ) pins Bogyeong KIM (KOR).

11:59: A sad end for Soobin KIM (KOR) in her 65kg quarterfinal match with Mahiro YOSHITAKE (JPN). Yoshitake gets in on single second into the match and wrenches Kim's knee inward, causing her to cry out in pain. She is taken off the mat on a stretcher.

11:55: A quick pin for Qian JIANG (CHN) over Oguljan EGEMBERDIYEVA (TKM) at 72kg.

11:54: Sezim ZHUMANAZAROVA (KGZ), 2021 world junior bronze medalist, goes ahead with a takedown and gut wrench midway through the second period, then adds a pair of late takedowns for a 10-4 victory over Ulmeken ESENBAEVA (UZB) at 57kg.

11:51: To the thrill of the home crowd Dilnaz SAZANOVA (KGZ) with a 12-0 win over Naziya JORAYEVA (TKM) at 65kg. Great start for the home wrestlers today.

11:45: Unheralded Nagisa HARADA (JPN), a late replacement on the Japan squad at 53kg for injured world champion Akari FUJINAMI (JPN), falls at the first hurdle, losing 4-0 to 2018 champion Chun LEI (CHN). In the first period, Lei uses an underarm spin for a takedown, adds a gut wrench, and fends off the attacks from Harada, a silver medalist at the 2023 Klippan Lady Open.

11:43: A rare and impressive victory for Sri Lanka on Mat B, as Nethmi AHINSA (SRI) chalks up a 12-1 victory over Ayazhan MARKASHEVA (KAZ) at 53kg. Sri Lanka is still looking for its first-ever senior Asian Championships medal.

11:36: In the opening match on Mat A, 2019 Asian cadet champion Ji Hyang KIM (PRK) scores a pair of takedowns in the first period, with a 2-point exposure after the second one, to lead 6-0 against Otgontuya CHINBOLD (MGL), the silver medalist last year at 55kg. Kim gains another takedown and exposure combination to end the match 10-0 with 25 seconds to spare.

11:30: Aisuluu TYNYBEKOVA (KGZ) will be wrestling in Bishkek and she will renew her rivalry with Sakura MOTOKI (JPN) at 62kg. Tynybekova has won both the matches the two have wrestled. A potential third meeting in the final is on the cards.

#wrestlebishkek, #WrestleParis

Rising star Sogabe survives scare to gain Paris 2024 ticket

By Ken Marantz

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan (April 21) -- For all the young wrestlers who wonder why they do so much bridging in practice, Kyotaro SOGABE (JPN) showed how it can all pay off in that future situation when the stakes are at their highest.

Sogabe, about to see his Olympic dream ended, fought tenaciously off his back before going on to defeat Meiirzhan SHERMAKHANBET (KAZ) 11-2 and earn a ticket to the Paris Olympics at Greco 67kg on the final day of the Asian Olympic Qualifier on Sunday in Bishkek.

"If I had lost by fall there, my life would have been over," said the 22-year-old Sogabe, the 2023 Asian silver medalist who has long been touted in Japan as a star of the future. "All I've ever thought deep in my heart is that I will definitely win the gold medal in Paris.

"I asked myself, 'Are you going to give up now?' and that really got me going. I was so strongly determined not to lose by fall that I was able to escape."

Iran became the first country to complete the full set of six Greco quotas when Amin KAVIYANI (IRI) and Alireza MOHMADIPIANI (IRI) won their respective bouts at 77kg and 87kg, although neither victory came easy.

Also notably qualifying for Paris was Asia's "greybeard" Rustam ASSAKALOV (UZB), the 39-year-old wonder who earned his third trip to the Olympics with a victory at 97kg.

Kazakhstan came away with three Paris berths, while Korea won two along with Iran. The DPR Korea, which was shut out in freestyle before winning three spots in women's wrestling, gained its first and only ticket in Greco.

Three countries saw bids for historic victories quashed, as Jordan and Saudi Arabia were left still waiting for their first-ever Olympians in wrestling, while Chinese Taipei remains without ever having a male wrestler make the Olympics.

Combined with the results from last year's World Championships in Belgrade, where five quotas per weight class were available, Kazakhstan now has four, Kyrgyzstan, Japan and China three each, Korea and Uzbekistan two apiece and the DPR Korea one. The last chance will be at the World Olympic Qualifier in Istanbul on May 9-12, where three final places will be up for grabs.

Kyotaro SOGABE (JPN)Kyotaro SOGABE (JPN) with the 'qualified athlete' ticket for Paris Olympics. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Kadir Caliskan)

For Japan's Sogabe, his victory made up for a controversial loss in the quarterfinals in Belgrade to Mohammadreza GERAEI (IRI), which he lost 11-10 but had the crowd fully on his side as the Iranian waned in the final moments. It also made him determined to leave Bishkek with the ticket to Paris.

"The World Championships last year was devastating, and I have practiced every day with the determination to win the gold medal in Paris," said Sogabe, a 2022 world U23 bronze medalist. "Keeping that tough experience in my head, I worked on fixing things that weren't working well and was able to win here."

Asked about getting the chance to avenge the loss to Geraei in Paris, Sogabe expressed more concern with just winning the gold, regardless of who he faces.

"Today was really enjoyable, and I realized that in the end, having fun is the best way to do wrestling," he said. "I have to think about how I can become the strongest wrestler I can be so I can win at the Olympics. My goal is the gold medal, and I want to win it by being the strongest of all and in an enjoyable way."

Sogabe's victory came two days after Nippon Sports Science University teammate Kotaro KIYOOKA (JPN) earned his Paris ticket at freestyle 65kg. The two are both from the central island of Shikoku, and have been friendly rivals since their elementary school days.

"We are in the same class, and ever since we were young, I have not wanted to lose to him," Sogabe said. "'If I lose here, I'll be a step behind [Kotaro],' I thought. We are rivals, but we push each other and make each other better. I want us to win gold medals in Paris together."

Sogabe saw how quickly fortunes can turn in the sport in his clash with Asian Games silver medalist Sharmankhanbet, the 2021 Asian champion and a 2018 world bronze medalist.

Sogabe secured a body lock on Sharmankhanbet and slammed him down for four points -- only to have Sharmankhanbet roll Sogabe onto his back and secure a tight front headlock. A fall seemed imminent, but Sogabe's bridge kept his shoulders off the mat, and after a few tense seconds, he managed to extricate himself from the danger.

The Kazakh side made a seemingly dubious challenge for a suspected hand block of the leg, which was not only denied to give Sogabe a 5-2 lead but would work against them when an actual challenge situation arose later on and they could not contest it.

While his aggressiveness got him into trouble, Sogabe said he has no plans to change his style. "I have used attacking wrestling all this time, so I'm definitely not going to veer away from it," he said. "I will continue attacking right up to the very end."

In the second period, Sogabe drove Sharmankhanbet down for a takedown, although it looked like he may have stepped on his opponent's foot. But because the Kazakh side could not challenge, the points stood and Sogabe had a comfortable 7-2 lead. He stopped a desperation throw for 4 in the final seconds to make it officially a technical fall.

Among the crowd at Bishkek Arena were Sogabe's family and Nippon Sports Science University head coach Shingo MATSUMOTO, who flew in for the occasion. "For my whole family to come all this way, and coach Matsumoto here to support me, I'm really happy that I was able to get the job done," said Sogabe, who had to beat Asian Games champion and senior training partner Katsuaki ENDO (JPN) to earn the right to compete in Bishkek.

Sogabe's path to the final started with an 8-0 victory over 36-year-old Hansu RYU (KOR), a two-time Olympian and two-time former world champion, which may have marked a generational change in the weight class.

Amantur ISMAILOV (KGZ)Amantur ISMAILOV (KGZ) tries to pin HUSIYUETU (CHN) in 67kg semifinals. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Amirreza Aliasgari)

The other Paris berth at 67kg went to Amantur ISMAILOV (KGZ), who thrilled the home crowd with a second-period surge that gave him a 9-1 victory over HUSIYUETU (CHN).

Leading 1-0 off a passivity point in the first period, Ismailov started the second by fighting off a throw for a takedown, then charged ahead with a reverse body lift for a 2-point exposure. China challenged the original takedown, only to see it not only affirmed, but Husiyuetu assessed a 2-point penalty for touching the leg while he was being sent to his back.

The penalty, while giving Ismailov a 7-1 lead, also put him on the top in par terre, and he turned Husiyuetu over to end the match at 3:58.

Amin KAVIYANI (IRI)Amin KAVIYANI (IRI) celebrates after winning the Paris Olympic 77kg quota for Iran. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Amirreza Aliasgari)

At 77kg, Iran's Asian Games silver medalist Kaviyani was made to work hard for his Paris ticket, clinching a tense 6-5 victory over Rui LIU (CHN) by scoring the last of three consecutive stepouts with 49 seconds left.

Liu got off to a good start in his bid to avenge a 1-1 semifinal loss at last October's Asian Games in China when he completed a roll from par terre, and had a 2-point leg blocking penalty tacked on for a 5-0 lead. Kaviyani cut the gap with a counter takedown before the break.

"Everything was under control, but unfortunately I got a two-point warning," Kaviyani said. "In my opinion, there was no foot fault but it made the fight more difficult for me."

In the second period, Kaviyani received a passivity point but allowed Liu to pop out from par terre, leaving him trailing 5-3. But then the three-time Asian medalist launched his succession of stepouts to march to victory and a likely trip to Paris.

"At the Asian Games where the Chinese were the hosts, against the Chinese wrestler who is powerful, I won the match with a 1-1 score, but today I was able to get more technical points in this match," Kaviyani said. "I was under a bit of pressure and I had to get the best result. I’m thankful that I could get that result and the Olympic quota."

Alireza MOHMADIPIANI (IRI)Alireza MOHMADIPIANI (IRI) defeated Jalgasbay BERDIMURATOV (UZB) to win the 87kg quota for Iran. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Amirreza Aliasgari)

A short time later at 87kg, Mohmadipiani was also taken to the limit in securing Iran's sixth Olympic quota with a 3-2 victory over Asian Games champion Jalgasbay BERDIMURATOV (UZB).

Berdimuratov was only able to gain a 1-point stepout from a throw attempt out of par terre in the first period, and that would make the difference when Mohmadpiani, the world silver medalist at 82kg, got 2 from a throw in the same situation in the second period.

"I’m thankful that I could get the Olympic quota one year after the World Championships, especially when I was able to go from 82kg to 87kg," Mohmadpiani said. "I feel really good that I could keep this weight and I hope I can defeat my opponents in the Olympics."

Looking toward Paris, Mohmadpiani added, "My plan for the Olympics is to fix my flaws and add some new techniques so I can wrestle some mistake-free matches in the Olympics and shine."

Rustam ASSAKALOV (UZB)Rustam ASSAKALOV (UZB) celebrates after beating Uzur DZHUZUPBEKOV (KGZ) to win the Paris 2024 quota. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Kadir Caliskan)

At 97kg, the ageless Assakalov rumbled to another Olympics with a 3-1 victory over Tokyo Olympian Uzur DZHUZUPBEKOV (KGZ), who was his own worst enemy by committing a 2-point penalty for grabbing the singlet.

Assakalov, coming off a bronze-medal performance at the Asian Games, was put in par terre first, but was unable to add points against Dzhuzupbekov, a five-time Asian medalist and 2019 champion.

In the second period, Assakalov initiated a challenge to get Dzhuzupbekov tagged for grabbing the singlet that had gone unnoticed by the referee. The challenge worked, and Assakalov now had a 3-0 lead.

All he had to do was survive a stint on the bottom of par terre, which he did, and then used his vast experience to hold off Dzhuzupbekov while avoiding a passivity caution.

Assakalov, whose longevity is a testament to his love of the sport, has a long list of career achievements. He finished eighth at both the 2016 Rio and 2021 Tokyo Olympics, won a world silver in 2015 and bronze in 2017, and has eight Asian medals, including three golds.

It was singlet-grabbing that also proved the downfall for Ibrahim FALLATAH (KSA) in the other 97kg match, in which he lost 5-1 to Seungjun KIM (KOR) to fall short of becoming Saudi Arabia's first-ever wrestler in the Olympics.

Fallatah was hit with a 2-point penalty for grabbing the singlet in each period, while both wrestlers received a passivity point but were unable to score in par terre.

The loss by Sultan EID (JOR) to Haitao QIAN (CHN) in the other 87kg match was much more straightforward, as the Chinese held the upper hand throughout in a 7-0 victory in denying Jordan its first-ever Olympic wrestler.

Qian, a 2019 world bronze medalist at 82kg, was put in par terre in the first period and took advantage with a pair of gut wrenches for a 5-0 lead. In the second period, he used an underhook for a driving takedown to put the victory on ice.

Demeu ZHADRAYEV (KAZ)Demeu ZHADRAYEV (KAZ) scores a match-winning takedown against Dowon LEE (KOR) at 77kg. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Kadir Caliskan)

In the other 77kg match, veteran four-time Asian medalist Demeu ZHADRAYEV (KAZ) seemed to be heading straight to defeat when his opponent Dowon LEE (KOR) suddenly crumbled late in their bout, giving Zhadrayev a 5-2 victory and a possible second trip to the Olympics.

Lee began brightly with a nice arm drag for a takedown that gave him a 2-0 lead at the break. And when he gave up a passivity point and was put on bottom, he kept a one-point lead by slipping out of a roll attempt for no points.

But with Zhadrayev viciously pressing ahead at the edge, Lee was holding out quite well until he suddenly ran out of gas and was crushed to the mat for a takedown with 30 seconds to go. Lee then limply went over for a 2-point exposure.

For the wrestlers at 60kg, the tournament provided a golden opportunity for an Olympic place, as Asian nations swept all five places in the weight class in Belgrade -- the only region to do so in any of the three styles.

Two-time world bronze medalist Aidos SULTANGALI (KAZ) came out the winner in the opening match of the night session with a victory by fall over Jui Chi HUANG (TPE).

Sultangali got four points by driving Huang onto his back in defense of an awkward arm throw, then added a gut wrench and a throw that ended up being ruled a stepout. A challenge by the Chinese Taipei downgraded the original 4-pointer to two, leaving Sultangali with a 5-0 lead.

Sultangali, the 2021 Asian champion, went right back to work, sticking Huang with a textbook-perfect headlock throw and securing the fall at 2:28.

Huang was attempting to become Chinese Taipei's first-ever male wrestler to qualify for the Olympics. The nation has had just one wrestler in the Olympics, Wen-Ling CHEN (TPE), who appeared in women's 69kg at the 2016 Rio Games.

Se Ung RI (PRK)Se Ung RI (PRK) won the DPR Korea's first Greco-Roman quota for Paris Olympics at 60kg. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Kadir Caliskan)

In the other match at 60kg, Se Ung RI (PRK) scored a first-period takedown and held on for a 3-0 victory over Dahyun KIM (KOR), who was thrown off his feet twice in the match but somehow managed to keep the moves from scoring points.

Ri looked like he would take an early lead when he hit Kim with a hip throw, but the Korean cartwheeled out of it and landed on his feet for no points. When Ri received a passivity point and was put on top of par terre, he lifted Kim off the mat but was unable to get enough height for points.

Ri got on the scoreboard again with a nice duck-under takedown for a 3-0 lead at the break, and in the second period, he kept the pressure on to avoid giving Kim a chance in par terre.

Korea picked up its second victory of the night at 130kg, when Seungchan LEE (KOR) cruised to a 9-0 win over surprise semifinalist Sota OKUMURA (JPN). Lee gained a passivity point and proceeded to reel off four straight rolls to win in 1:36, the shortest bout of the night.

Okumura, who was looking to become the first Japanese heavyweight in Greco to make the Olympics since 1996, had never won a match in eight previous international tournaments before he rallied to defeat Tamurbek NASIMOV (UZB) 12-6 to move one step away from Paris. That had avenged a loss to Nasimov at the Asian Games.

Alimkhan SYZDYKOV (KAZ)Alimkhan SYZDYKOV (KAZ) hung on for a 7-7 victory over Roman KIM (KGZ) at 130kg. (Photo: United World Wrestling / Kadir Caliskan)

Asian Games bronze medalist Alimkhan SYZDYKOV (KAZ) capped the tournament by fighting off fatigue and home favorite Roman KIM (KGZ) to eke out a 7-7 win in the other 130kg match.

The match between the three-time Asian medalists started with a bang, or a slap as it were. After scoring a stepout, Syzdykov was awarded two points when Kim lashed him with a sharp slap to the ear like the type seen more in sumo wrestling. Kim then spun behind for a takedown to cut Syzydkov's lead to 3-2 at the break.

Syzydkov padded the lead to 7-2 with a takedown and gut wrench, but after that, it was obvious he was running on fumes. Kim put the pressure on and scored a pair of stepouts, with a fleeing point tacked onto the second one to make it 7-5, before Syzydkov was assessed a 2-point penalty for inactivity.

Leading 7-7 on criteria, Syzydkov dropped to the mat at one point complaining of knee pain and received treatment much to the chagrin of the partisan crowd. But Kim had little left in the tank himself and was unable to muster enough energy for a final push.


Paris 2024 Qualification Matches


Aidos SULTANGALI (KAZ) df. Jui Chi HUANG (TPE) by Fall, 2:28 (10-0)
Se Ung RI (PRK) df. Dahyun KIM (KOR), 3-0

Amantur ISMAILOV (KGZ) df. HUSIYUETU (CHN) by TF, 9-1, 3:58
Kyotaro SOGABE (JPN) df. Meiirzhan SHERMAKHANBET (KAZ) by TF, 11-2, 6:00

Demeu ZHADRAYEV (KAZ) df. Dowon LEE (KOR), 5-2

Haitao QIAN (CHN) df. Sultan EID (JOR), 7-0
Alireza MOHMADIPIANI (IRI) df. Jalgasbay BERDIMURATOV (UZB), 3-2

Seungjun KIM (KOR) df. Ibrahim FALLATAH (KSA), 5-1

Seungchan LEE (KOR) df. Sota OKUMURA (JPN) by TF, 9-0, 1:36
Alimkhan SYZDYKOV (KAZ) df. Roman KIM (KGZ), 7-7