Four Russian Women Punch Tickets to Day Four Finals

By Eric Olanowski

NOVI SAD, Serbia (March 6) – Russian women won four of five semifinal matches, qualifying a quartet of wrestlers for Thursday night’s U23 European championship women’s wrestling finals.

The four Russian women who will compete for gold on Thursday night (18:00 local time) are Nadezhda SOKOLOVA, Viktoriia VAULINA, Khanum VELIEVA, and Daria SHISTEROVA. 

At 50kg, Russia’s Sokolova threw Turkan NASIROVA (AZE) to her back early in the first period and scored the fall, locking up her first European finals appearance since her 2016 title-winner performance. 

She’ll wrestle 2018 world bronze medalist Oksana LIVACH (UKR) in the 50kg gold-medal bout. To reach the finals, Livach shutout Poland’s Katarzyna KAMINSKA, 10-0, and locked up her spot in the finals. The Ukranian wrestler led 4-0 in her semifinals match against Kaminska before closing the match out with a takedown and a pair of leg laces. 

Russia’s second finalist is Viktoriia Vaulina. Vaulina was up 8-0, but surrendered six straight points to her German opponent and only led 8-6. A late headlock for the Russian increased her lead by four points and pushed her into the finals with a 12-6 victory. 

She’ll have to defeat Turkey’s Eda TEKIN to take the home 55kg gold medal. Tekin trailed 4-1 with under 20 seconds left when she picked up a takedown and an exposure, stealing the match, 5-4. 

Four-time age-group world champion Khanum Velieva is the third Russian competing for a Day 4 gold medal. Velieva used three takedowns and a step out to score the 7-0 shutout over Ukraine’s Alina RUDNYTSKA LEVYTSKA in her semifinals match. 

Velieva will wrestle Natalia STRZALKA (POL) for the 68kg gold medal. 

Strzalka scored nine unanswered second-period points after trailing 4-0 and grabbed the 9-4 victory over Yauheniya ANDREICHYKAVA (BLR). 

Russia’s remaining semifinal winner was Daria Shisterova, who led 1-0 but had to capitalize on a pair defensive of takedowns in the second period to defeat Romana VOVCHAK (UKR), 5-2. 

She’ll take on Turkey’s Aysegul OZBEGE (TUR) in tomorrow’s finals. Ozbege shutout Italy’s Enrica RINALDI (ITA), 9-0, to reach her first European finals. 

The lone weight not featuring a Russian finalist is 59kg. 

Moldova’s Anastasia NICHITA will meet Ukraine’s Anhelina LYSAK in the 59kg gold-medal match.   

Nichita only needed a little over a minute to pick up the 10-0 technical superiority victory over Russia’s Zelfira SADRADDINOVA to lock up a spot in the finals.

Her finals opponent Lysak trampled Emma Margareta JOHANSSON (SWE), 12-1 in her semifinals bout. 

Thursday’s finals begin at 18:00 (local time) and can be watched live on www.unitedworldwrestling.org.

GOLD - Oksana LIVACH (UKR) df. Nadezhda SOKOLOVA (RUS) 
SEMIFINAL - Oksana LIVACH (UKR) df. Katarzyna KAMINSKA (POL), 10-0 
SEMIFINAL - Nadezhda SOKOLOVA (RUS) df. Turkan NASIROVA (AZE), via fall 

GOLD - Eda TEKIN (TUR) vs. Viktoriia VAULINA (RUS)
SEMIFINAL - Viktoriia VAULINA (RUS) df. Ellen RIESTERER (GER), 12-6 

GOLD - Anastasia NICHITA (MDA) vs. Anhelina LYSAK (UKR)
SEMIFINAL - Anastasia NICHITA (MDA) df. Zelfira SADRADDINOVA (RUS), 10-0
SEMIFINAL - Anhelina LYSAK (UKR) df. Emma Margareta JOHANSSON (SWE), 12-1 

GOLD - Natalia  STRZALKA (POL) vs. Khanum VELIEVA (RUS)


SEMIFINAL - Aysegul OZBEGE (TUR) df. Enrica RINALDI (ITA), 9-0 


Russia Closes out U23 European C'ships with Freestyle Team Title

By Eric Olanowski

NOVI SAD, Serbia (March 10) – The Russian Federation won four gold medals on the final day of wrestling at the U23 European Championships and brought their freestyle championship total to six. Russia closed out the competition in Novi Sad, Serbia, 77 points ahead of second place Turkey. 

Overall, Russia reached the finals in eight of ten freestyle weight classes and reached the top of the team podium thanks to their four Day 7 gold medal performances by Abasgadzhi MAGOMEDOV, Nikita SUCHKOV, Arsen-Ali MUSALALIEV, and Batyrbek TCAKULOV. 

At 61kg, reigning junior world champion Abasgadzhi Magomedov scored a takedown in each period to defeat Greece’s two-time cadet European champion and 2018 U23 European bronze medalist Georgios PILIDIS, 4-0. 


Nikita Suchkov claimed Russia’s second gold medal of the day with a win in the 74kg finals over Akhsarbek GULAEV (SVK).

Suchkov improved on his 2017 U23 European Championship finish of 17th place, cruising past Gulaev, 7-2. Sunday's loss made it the second year in a row that Gulaev lost to a Russian opponent in the U23 European finals. Last season, he fell short against eventual senior level world champion Zaurbek SIDAKOV in the U23 continental finals.  

Arsen-Ali Musalaliev, the reigning U23 European champion, won Russia’s third consecutive gold medal of the day with a 6-1 victory over Turkey’s Arif OZEN (TUR) in the 86kg finals. Musalaliev successfully defended his U23 European title by scoring a pair of takedowns and a gut wrench, closing out the European Championships by outscoring his four continental opponents 32-3. 

In the 92kg finals, last year’s U23 European bronze medalist Batyrbek Tcakulov collected four points from a takedown and a gut wrench and scored the 4-0 shutout win over Ukraine’s Vasyl SOVA, giving Russia their fourth and final gold medal of the day. 

The tournament’s remaining freestyle gold medal went to Belarus' 2017 U23 European finalist Vitali PIASNIAK. The Belarusian edged last year’s European junior runner-up Yurii IDZINSKYI (UKR), 2-2 to in the 125kg gold-medal match. 


GOLD - Russia  (209 points)
SILVER - Turkey (132 points)
BRONZE - Ukraine (110 points)

Fourth - Georgia (109 points) 
Fifth - Belarus (82 points)

GOLD - Abasgadzhi MAGOMEDOV (RUS) df. Georgios PILIDIS (GRE), 4-0 
BRONZE - Selehattin SERT (TUR) df. Valentyn BLIASETSKYI (UKR), 8-5

BRONZE - Asgar MAMMADALIYEV (AZE) df. Uladzislau KOIKA (BLR), 7-1 

GOLD - Nikita SUCHKOV (RUS) df. Akhsarbek GULAEV (SVK), 7-2 

BRONZE - Giorgi SULAVA (GEO) df. Fazli ERYILMAZ (TUR), via fall 
BRONZE - Khachatur PAPIKYAN (ARM) df. Eduard TATARINOV (GER), 10-3 

GOLD - Arsen-Ali MUSALALIEV (RUS) df. Arif OZEN (TUR), 6-1 

BRONZE - Zaur BERADZE (GEO) df. Arkadzi PAHASIAN (BLR), 4-2 
BRONZE - Gadzhimurad MAGOMEDSAIDOV (AZE) df. Johannes Martin DEML (GER), 8-4

GOLD -. Batyrbek TCAKULOV (RUS) df. Vasyl SOVA (UKR), 4-0 
BRONZE - Shamil ZUBAIROV (AZE) df. Aliaksei RUDZIANOK (BLR), 12-0

BRONZE - Erhan YAYLACI (TUR) df. Bendeguz TOTH (HUN), 6-6 

GOLD - Vitali PIASNIAK (BLR) vs. Yurii IDZINSKYI (UKR), 2-2 
BRONZE - Kamil Tomasz KOSCIOLEK (POL) df. Samhan JABRAILOV (MDA), 3-0 

BRONZE - Vitalii GOLOEV (RUS) df. Georgii NOGAEV (SVK), 2-1