Kuznetsova's Gold Pushes Russia Past Ukraine in Women's Team Race

By Eric Olanowski

NOVI SAD, Serbia (March 8) - The Russian Federation, led by their solo Day 6 champion Mariia KUZNETSOVA (RUS), captured the U23 European team title 12 points ahead of second-place Ukraine. Kuznetsova was one of three Russian women to leave Novi Sad with a gold medal. They also had a trio of runner-ups and pair of bronze-medal finishers. 

Russia trailed Ukraine by eight points heading into Kuznetsova’s 65kg gold-medal bout, but her 4-1 victory over Romania’s Kriszta INCZE put her country back in front by seven points. 

Evgeniia ZAKHARCHENKO’s second-place finish in the 72kg round-robin competition sealed the team title for Russia as they finished with 180 points. 

Ukraine, who finished in second place with two champions and three silver medalists, finished the tournament with a total of 168 points. 

Ilona PROKOPEVNIUK was one of three Ukrainian finalists, but the only one of Ukraine's Day 5 finalists to reach the top of the podium. It only took her 58 seconds to lock up a cradle and stick Germany's Luzie MANZKE in the 62kg gold-medal bout. 

Meanwhile, the other pair of Day 5 gold medals went to Germany’s Annika WENDLE and Hungary’s Ramona GALAMBOS. 

In the 53kg finals, Wendle and Khrystyna BEREZA (UKR) traded inactivity points, but it was a late failed Ukrainian challenge that proved to be the difference in the match. The German wrestler was awarded a point and closed out the match with the 2-1 victory. 

In the 57kg gold-medal bout, Ramona Galambos had the 1-1 advantage on criteria but used an inactivity point to take the 2-1 outright lead and eventually the win over Ukraine's Alina AKOBIIA. 

This was Galambos' 13th overall time competing at a European Championships, and first time winning a continental gold since she did so back at the 2013 Cadet European Championships. 

Wrestling resumes Saturday in Novi Sad with the freestyle qualifications rounds beginning at 11:30 (local time). The Day 6 freestyle semifinals begin at 17:15, and will be followed by the first five freestyle finals matchups. 

Women’s Wrestling 
Team Scores
GOLD - Russia  (180 points)

SILVER - Ukraine (168 points)
BRONZE - Turkey (118 points)
Fourth - Belarus (90 points)
Fifth - Romania (85 points)

GOLD - Annika WENDLE (GER) df. Khrystyna BEREZA (UKR), 2-1 
BRONZE - Zeynep YETGIL (TUR) df. Kremena PETROVA (BUL), 11-4
BRONZE Suzanna SEICARIU (ROU) df. Tatyana VARANSOVA (AZE), 2-2 

GOLD - Ramona GALAMBOS (HUN) df. Alina AKOBIIA (UKR), 2-1 
BRONZE - Elif YANIK (TUR) df. Valeryia YARMOLA (BLR), via fall 

GOLD - Ilona PROKOPEVNIUK (UKR) df. Luzie MANZKE (GER), via fall 
BRONZE - Daria BOBRULKO (RUS) df. Ameline DOUARRE (FRA), 4-1

GOLD - Mariia KUZNETSOVA (RUS) df. Kriszta Tunde INCZE (ROU), 4-1 
BRONZE - Pauline Denise LECARPENTIER (FRA) df. Elis MANOLOVA (AZE), 5-5 
BRONZE - Noémi SZABADOS (HUN) df. Anastasiia LAVRENCHUK (UKR), 8-8

Anastasiya ZIMIANKOVA (BLR) 


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