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Chas Betts ran into old nemesis in first Olympics

LONDON, England — American Chas Betts and Cuba’s Pablo Shorey have seen quite a bit of each other the past six months.

Unfortunately for Betts, the third time was not a charm … as the Cuban defeated the Minnesota native, 1-0, 1-0, in the Round of 16 at 185 pounds in the Greco-Roman tournament of the Olympics in London’s ExCel Center.

 

Chas Betts (right) pushed for position against Cuba’s Pablo Shorey at 185 pounds. (John Sachs image)

“The loss is tough,” said Betts, who was eliminated from Olympic competition when Shorey was pinned by Poland’s Dan Janikowski in the quarterfinals. “It’s even tougher to sit and watch your guy try carry you through. I was hoping he’d get to the finals, but obviously it didn’t work out. I’m pretty disappointed. Everybody says the Olympics don’t ever go the way anyone expects it to. I did my best to be ready for everything here.”

In February, Betts defeated the Cuban in the Pan-Am tournament before Shorey beat the American one month later at an Olympic qualifying tournament in Orlando, Fla.

Neither Betts nor Shorey could score from their feet in the first 1:30. Shorey won the period by defending from par terre. The Cuban then dropped the Minnesota native with a lone pushout :31 seconds into the second period.

Betts opened his Olympic competition with a 6-0, 1-0 win over Keitani Graham of Federated States of Micronesia as Betts won the first period on a five-point throw.

“I thought I bridged big enough and could see his shoulders,” said Betts who nearly scored a fall on the move. “I knew going in that I wanted to start it off big and start it off for a big five pointer and get everybody riled up.”

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