Pictured: Olympic bronze medalists Tomas Gilman advances to the semifinals at the 2021 Senior World Championships in Oslo, Norway, October 3. Photo by Tony Rotundo/Wrestlers Are Warriors.
On day one (session one and two) at the 2021 Senior World Championships, at Jordal Amfi in Oslo, Norway, Team USA was dominant.
Daton Fix (61kg), Kyle Dake (74kg), and David Taylor (86kg) each advanced to the gold-medal finals match. Additionally, Nick Gwiazdowski is still alive in the repechage play. You can’t ask for much better if your USA men’s freestyle head coach Bill Zadick.
Heading into day number two, the Red, White, and Blue weren’t expected to miss a beat as four more American hammers took to the mats to begin their respective World Championships. Men’s freestylers Thomas Gilman (57kg), Yianni Diakomihalis (65kg), Jordan Burroughs (79kg), and J’den Cox (92kg) started their tournaments early Sunday morning, October 3.
It was a strong session three in Oslo. The U.S. advanced Gilman, Burroughs, and Cox into the semifinals later today. However, Diakomihalis was eliminated after a 1-1 performance in session three.
As a group, Team USA was 10-1 in the session with six techs, one fall, one medical forfeit victory, and two regular decision wins.
From the first grouping, two-time World bronze medalist Nick Gwiazdowski found his offense in bunches in match number one of the session. He won his repechage match, 6-1 vs. Dzianis Khramiankou (Belarus) at heavyweight, earning the right two wrestle for his third career World bronze medal. He’ll go for bronze later today against Turkey’s Taha Akgül, a three-time World/Olympic champ and seven-time World/Olympic medalist.
The second grouping picked up exactly where the first quartet left off.
In his opener, J’den Cox went full-J’den. Cox got it done over Orgilokh Dagvadorj (Mongolia). The former Mizzou standout and 2016 Rio bronze medalist held a 5-2 lead at the break after securing two takedowns and a step-out. Cox tallied a takedown in the second frame with some turns to extend the lead to 11-2. A final takedown gave Cox the opening-round superiority decision, 13-2.
Cox improved to 2-0 on the day after securing a 10-0 tech of Italy’s Simone Iannattoni. Cox started with a pair of step-outs. From there, he added three takedowns and two tilts to win it early in the second period.
J’den made it look easy once again in the quarterfinals against Canada’s Jeremy Poirier. Cox used four takedowns, a gut wrench, and some fancy footwork to make it to the semifinals. He has yet to be tested in Oslo.
In his first World Team berth, Yianni Diakomihalis (65kg) looked solid. There certainly were no opening-match jitters. The Cornell two-time NCAA champ used four takedowns and a gut wrench for a quick first-period tech fall over fellow collegian, UNI’s Colin Realbuto, who was suiting up for Italy.
Unfortunately, Yianni D hit a wall offensively. He fell to Vazgen Tevanyan (Armenia). Tevanyan is a 2019 Junior World bronze medalist and a 2019 U23 Senior European Championships gold medalist. Tevanyan later lost in a lackluster 2-1 showing over Tulga Tumur Ochir of Mongolia, which knocks Yianni Diakomihalis out of the competition (not eligible for repechage).
Yianni did a good job defending the initial underhook throwby but great adjustments by the pre tournament favorite Tevanyan to get that ankle elevated for a couple takedowns— The Wrestling Nomad (@wrestlingnomad) October 3, 2021
In rapid succession, Jordan Burroughs (79kg) and Thomas Gilman (57kg) won their first bouts of the 2021 Worlds decisively. Burroughs landed three powerful double-legs against Canada’s Samuel Barmish to get the first-period tech, 10-0. The pop and power were out in full force for Burroughs at 79kg.
In year 10, the eight-time World/Olympic medalist just secured his 200th Senior-level victory. In rather anticlimactic fashion, Burroughs received a medical forfeit from Bolat Sakayev (Kazakhstan) in the Round of 16.
Jordan Burroughs – 10 years, 200 wins— Jon Kozak (@KozakJon) October 3, 2021
In the last bout of session three, Burroughs battled Russia’s Radik Valiev, a former 2019 U23 Senior World bronze medalist and two-time U23 Senior Euro gold medalist, in the all-important USA vs. Russia showdown.
It was a slow start for the American, who trailed 3-2 at the break. However, in the second period, Burroughs added two more step-out points (four total in the match) and a beautiful double-leg that sent Valiev to his back and gave Jordan four. Burroughs added a point because of a failed challenge and hung on to win 9-4.
9th. He's wrestling for his 9th. i'm an idiot and Jordan is even better at wrestling. https://t.co/IH9ecgmHpw— Wrestling 🧠 (@MatScoutWillie) October 3, 2021
At 57kg, Thomas Gilman came up huge in his World opener, getting a first-period fall over Abubakr Mutaliev (Russia), a two-time Russian Nationals bronze medalist. The Russian held a 2-0 record against the former Iowa Hawkeye standout before this matchup.
Not only does this pin carry over what has been an amazing two months of wrestling for Gilman, but it also has massive team race implications with Russia. While the fall doesn’t wrap up the team race in favor of the USA, it dramatically shifts the scales in favor of the Americans for now.
In his second match in Oslo, Gilman added an 11-1 technical fall to the resume over Vladimir Egorov of North Macedonia. Gilman used a pair of takedowns and three step-out to created a 7-0 lead at the break. After giving up a step-out point himself, Gilman ended the match with a takedown-and-turn combo. The final was 11-1.
Current Team Scores:— Jon Kozak (@KozakJon) October 3, 2021
🇺🇸USA – 100
🇮🇷Iran – 86
🇷🇺Russia – 68
For complete results, replays, and weight-by-weight brackets, head over to FloWrestling and Flo Arena.
Other TOM Coverage from the 2021 World Championships
Session 1 Recap here
Session 2 Recap here