Turkey’s Riza Kayaalp remains the top-ranked heavyweight in the World after winning his fourth European Championship.
By William May
CORSIER-SUR-VEVEY, Switzerland (May 8) – European champions took control of the FILA World Rankings for Greco-Roman as world champions YUN Won-Chol (PRK) and RYU Han-Soo (KOR) were upset in the Asian championships in April.
Aleksandar KOSTADINOV (BUL) and Adam KURAK (RUS) moved into the top spots vacated by Yun and Ryu at 59kg and 66kg, respectively, with championship runs in Helsinki.
Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) was the only other new No.1, winning his third European championship title in a row (96kg, 98kg) and moving ahead of 2013 world champion Nikita MELNIKOV (RUS).
Wrestlers from Europe now top six of the eight Greco-Roman weight categories, while world champions KIM Hyeon-Woo (KOR) and Taleb Nariman NEMATPOUR (IRI) represent Asia. Kim roared to the Asian title at 75kg in Astana while Nematpour won the 85kg crown in Hungary in March.
Hungary is the only country with more than one wrestler on top of the rankings this month as Tama LORINCZ (HUN) and Peter BACSI (HUN) won at the European titles at 71kg and 80kg, respectively.
In the rankings, wrestlers are listed by name, country code, their most notable or most recent result, and their position in the previous rankings.
59kg – Aleksander KOSTADINOV (BUL) edged Poddubny tournament winner Ivan KUYLAKOV (RUS), 4-3, in the quarterfinals and then rolled over Universiade runner-up Victor CIOBANU (MDA) in the final to win his first European championship title in six tries.
With losses suffered by world champion YUN Won-Chol (PRK) and runner-up CHOI Gyu-Jin (KOR) in the Asian championships, Kostadinov moves to the top of the rankings ahead of Kuylakov and London 2012 Olympic Games gold medalist Hamid SORYAN (IRI).
Elmurat TASMURADOV (UZB), who defeated Choi in the quarterfinals of the Asia meeting, won in Asia for the second year in a row and breaks into the 59kg rankings at No.4 after being ranked No.6 at 66kg.
66kg – Two-time Ivan Poddubny champion Adam KURAK (RUS) won the European championship title with a last-second disqualification of 2010 world champion Hasan ALIYEV (AZE) and earned the No.1 ranking when 2013 world champion RYU Han-Soo (KOR) lost in Asia.
Ryu lost in the semifinals of the Asian championships, 2-4, to 2013 Asia junior champion Khusrav OBLOBERDIEV (TJK), but recovered for a bronze medal and the No.4 ranking.
71kg – London 2012 silver medalist Tamas LORINCZ (HUN) launched Rasul CHUNAYEV (AZE) from par terre for the fall to win his third European championship title and solidify his grip on the No.1 ranking at 71kg.
Athens 2004 gold medalist at 60kg JUNG Ji-Hyun laced up his shoes for the first time in 20 months and raced out for two quick technical falls. The 31-year-old veteran then edged past two-time Asian bronze medalist Maksat YEREZHEPOL (KAZ) on criteria in the final for his first-ever Asian title.
75kg – World and Olympic champion KIM Hyeon-Woo (KOR) forced a disqualification on 2011 world champion Saeid Mourad ABDVALI (IRI) in the semifinals and pinned 2012 Asia runner-up Takehiro KANAKUBO (JPN) in the final to firm up his position atop 75kg.
Aleksander CHEKHIRKIN (RUS), who defeated another world and Olympic gold medalist Roman VLASOV (RUS) for the Ivan Poddubny crown in January, rolled world bronze medalist Arsen JULFALAKYAN (ARM) in the European final and held on for his second major title of the year and the No.2 ranking.
80kg – Peter BACSI (HUN) outscored four opponents 34-0 on his way to the final at the European championships, then hammered out a 1-0 decision over former world champion Selcuk CEBI (TUR) for his first continental crown since 2008.
Unranked Yanarbek KENYEEV (KGZ) pinned 2012 junior world silver medalst Yousef GHADERIAN (IRI) in the final of the Asian championships to win his first title since the junior world meet in 2005. The Bishkek wrestler breaks into the rankings at No.8.
85kg – World University Games bronze medalist Zhan BELENYUK (UKR) pinned former world and Olympic champion Alexej MISHIN (RUS) in the semifinals and faced down hometown favorite Rami HIETANIEMI (FIN) for his first senior-level European championships crown.
Belenyuk won his third straight tourney of the season and leaps to No.2 in the rankings behind reigning world champion Taleb Nariman NEMATPOUR (IRI)
Nursultan TURSYNOV (KAZ), who lost to Belenyuk in the Universiade bronze medal final, wrapped up defending champion Rustam ASSAKALOV (UZB) with a technical fall in the Asian championships final for No.12 in the rankings.
98kg – World silver medalist Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) posted a 5-0 win over 2011 world bronze medalist CENK ILDEM (TUR) for his third European championship in a row and the No.1 ranking at 98kg.
Yerulan ISKAKOV (KAZ) racked up four technical falls with a combined score of 36-4 for his first Asian championship title, joining the rankings at No.12.
130kg – World silver medalist Riza KAYAALP (TUR) blanked four opponents, outscoring the challengers 23-0, to claim his fourth European championships title and his third tourney triumph of the year.
Two-time Olympic Games gold medalist Mijain LOPEZ NUNEZ (CUB) won his second title of the year at the Central American and Caribbean Games in San Juan. Lopez Nunez, who has been missing in action since the London 2012, is a four-time world champion, but finished second to Kayaalp in Istanbul in 2011.
|4||Elmurat TASMURADOV||Uzbekistan||6 at 66|
|8||YUN, Won-Chol||North Korea||1|
|12||CHOI, Gyu-Jin||South Korea||2|
|17||Stig Andre BERGE||Norway||11|
|18||Hatham MAHMOUD FAHMY||Egypt||NR|
|4||RYU Han-Soo||South Korea||1|
|12||JUNG Ji-Hyun||South Korea||NR|
|18||Alexi BELL CABALLERO||Cuba||15|
|1||KIM Hyeon-Woo||South Korea||1|
|6||Saeid Mourad ABDVALI||Iran||7|
|19||Neven ZUGAJ||Croatia||19 at 80|
|20||Zied AYT OKRAME||Tunisia||NR|
|14||Artur OMAROV||Czech Republic||NR|
|20||KIM Jun-Hyung||South Korea||NR|
|1||Taleb Nariman NEMATPOUR||Iran||1|
|10||Hassan Saman TAHMASEBI||Azerbaijan||2|
|12||Ali ALIYARI FEYZABADI||Iran||NR|
|13||Yasmany Daniel LUGO CABRERA||Cuba||15|
|20||Erwin CARABALLO CABRERA||Venezuela||18|
|2||Mijain LOPEZ NUNEZ||Cuba||5|
|3||Johan Magnus EUREN||Sweden||2|
|6||Bashir Asgiri BABAJANZADEH||Iran||6|
|19||Ramon Antonio GARCIA||Dominican Republic||NR|
|20||Robert SMITH||United States||15|
William May conducts the World Rankings for FILA. He has been active in wrestling across three continents for more than 40 years as a competitor, coach, referee and journalist. William worked as the “Sports Information Specialist” for wrestling at the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Olympic Games. He can be reached on his Facebook page or by email, email@example.com
FILA, the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles, is the global governing body of the sport of wrestling. It works to promote the sport and facilitate the activities of its 177 national federations from around the world. It is based in Corsier-sur-Vevey, Switzerland.
To learn more about FILA visit its official website, http://www.fila-official.com/; Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/fila.official, or Twitter handle, @FILA_Official.
(For more information please contact FILA at 41.21 312 84 26 or Bob Condron, Press Officer, firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Also see rankings on www.fila-official.com