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Dlagnev bronze medal highlights Day 1 of 2014 Worlds
Falling into a bronze-medal match has been common for Tervel Dlagnev, who has found himself in each of these consolation finals since representing the United States in five World/Olympic tournaments since 2009.
And the American heavyweight from Arlington, Texas, found himself in the same situation in Tashkent, Uzbekistan Monday … in the first of seven days in the 2014 World Championships. But for the first time since his first World tournament, the 275-pound Dlagnev was able to smile in his final bout as he defeated Alex Shemarov of Belarus in one of two bronze-medal bouts at the Gymnastics Palace.
“Tervel trained hard and worked hard,” U.S. coach Bruce Burnett told TheMat.com. “He’s a leader in the room and the type of guy you want on your team. I’m really, really happy for him. He earned it.”
Dlagnev, ranked 15th by United World Wrestling (formerly FILA), the governing body of international wrestling, opened his tournament by defeating his first two foes — Aleksandr Romanov of Moldova, 11-1, and Slovakia’s Soslan Gagloev, 5-0, — to advance to the quarterfinals where he lost 4-2 to the World’s No. 1-ranked Taha Akgul of Turkey.
When Akgul, who defeated Dlagnev in last year’s bronze-medal match, reached the finals (before the Turk eventually won the gold medal), that send Dlagnev to repechage (wrestleback) matches. First, Dlagnev defeated Aslan Dzebisov of Azerbaijan 3-1, before he edged Shemarov, the 2011 World champion, 2-1, for the bronze medal.
All the points in Dlagnev’s victory over Shemarov came when the American was put in a pair of 30-second passivity periods. The first came in with 2:11 gone in the first period when Dlagnev scored on a double with 10 seconds left on the shot clock. Shemarov’s point came after Dlagnev was put in another 30-second shot clock but could not score with 1:35 left in the match.
“I knew I had to get out quickly, get my points and stay in the fight,” Dlagnev said. “I was real fired up to have another shot at a medal. I obviously wanted to win a gold medal and that’s what I trained for, but I’m so pumped to win a bronze medal.”
In Dlagnev’s four previous World Championships, the former two-time NCAA Division II champion from Nebraska-Kearney, won a bronze medal in 2009, before settling for a fifth-place finish in the 2011 Worlds, 2012 Olympics and 2013 Worlds.
In his loss to Akgul, Dlagnev shot in for a takedown when he was down 3-0 and appeared to expose Akgul’s back for two more points but time has just expired. U.S. coaches challenged the call, but it was upheld. Akgul gained an additional point since the American challenge was denied.
“Tervel wrestled well,” U.S. coach Bruce Burnett told TheMat.com. “We thought he scored at the end against Turkey, but it didn’t go our way.”
Dlagnev was one of four Americans who competed in the first day of the 2014 World Championships. The other three World Team rookies all lost matches and were unable to compete for a bronze medal when the wrestler who defeated them lost in a later bout.
At 57 kilograms (125.5 pounds), Tony Ramos of Iowa City lost to Bekhbayar Erdenebat (Mongolia), 7-4, in the opening round and was eliminated when Erdenebat lost 6-3 to Vladimer Khinchegashvili of Georgia in a semifinal bout.
“It wasn’t much of a day – I only had one match,” Ramos told TheMat.com. “It’s not what I came here for and it’s not what I’ve been training for. I didn’t make all these sacrifices and train this hard to only wrestle one match.
“You can’t put your head down. You’ve got to keep moving forward. I only came here for one thing and that was to win it all. That’s still the main goal.”
At 70k/154.3 pounds, Nick Marable of Morgantown, W.Va., won his first two matches — defeating Akzhurek Tanatarov (Kazahkstan), 2-1, and Grigor Grigoryan (Armenia), 4-2 — before losing to Ali Shabanau (Belarus), 5-3, in a quarterfinal. Shabanau then lost 11-0 to Russia’s Khetik Tsabolov to knock Marable out of medal contention.
“This was my first time at the World Championships and it was a great experience,” Marable told TheMat.com. “I can only learn from this and keep getting better. I feel each time I’ve wrestled at this new weight class that I’ve performed better. I need to keep working and come back strong next year.”
At 86k/189.5 pounds, Ed Ruth of State College, Pa., split two bouts in his first World tournament: beating Yusup Melejayev (Turkmenistan)by a 12-2 technical fall before losing to Askari Mohammadian (Iran), 7-4. Two rounds later, Ruth was eliminated when Mohammadian lost to Cuba’s Reineris Salas of Cuba, 4-2, in the quarterfinals.
“I could’ve done a lot of things differently and done a lot of things better,” Ruth told TheMat.com. “I need to find a way to turn this loss around and learn from it. I need to come back harder and come back better next year.”
Four more American men’s freestyle wrestlers will compete in the second day of the Worlds on Tuesday: Jimmy Kennedy (61k/134.5), Brent Metcalf (65k/143.3), Jordan Burroughs (74k/163) and Jake Varner (97k/213.8).
While this will be the first World tournament for Kennedy, the other three have competed in at least two other World-level tournaments, including Burroughs who has combined to win the last two World (2011 and ’13) Championships and 2012 Olympics. This is Varner’s first World-level event since winning a gold medal in the 2012 Olympics. Metcalf is a combined 0-2 in two previous Worlds.
With a nine-hour difference between Uzbekistan and the East Coast of the United States, the matches will beginning at midnight (EDT) with the medal matches beginning at 9 a.m. on Tuesday.
Note: Bekzod Abdurakhmonov, who won a bronze medal at 7ok/154 for Uzbekistan, is a former All-American from Clarion. His only loss was to Yakup Gor of Turkey, 7-0, in the quarterfinals.
Men’s Freestyle medal matches from Day 1
57 kg/125.5 lbs.
Gold Medal — Kyong-Il Yang (North Korea) dec. Vladimir Khinchegashvili (Georgia), 5-3
Bronze Medals — Hassan Rahimi def. Yuki Takahashi (Japan), 7-4
Uladzislau Andreyeu (Belarus) def. Bekhbayar Erdenebat (Mongolia), 3-1
70 kg/154 lbs.
Gold Medal — Khetik Tsabolov (Russia) won by tech. fall over Yakup Gor (Turkey), 10-0
Bronze Medals — Bekzod Abdurakhmonov (Uzbekistan) dec. Zalimkhan Yusupov (TJK), 7-3
Ali Shabanau (Belarus) won by TF over Cleopas Ncube (Canada), 13-1
86 kg/189 lbs.
Gold Medal — Abdul Rashid Sadulaev (Russia) won by tech. fall over Reineris Salas (Cuba), 10-0
Bronze Medals — Selim Yasar (Turkey) dec. Aslan Kakhidze (Kazakhstan), 5-2
Askari Mohammadian (Iran) won by TF over Gamzat Osmanov (Azerbaijan), 11-2
125 kg/275 lbs.
Gold Medal — Taha Akgul (Turkey) dec. Komeil Ghasemi (Iran), 4-3
Bronze Medals — Tervel Dlagnev (United States) dec. Alex Shemarov (Belarus), 2-1
Khadzhimurat Gatcalov (Russia) pinned Oleksandr Khotsianivskyi (Ukraine)
United States Results from Day 1
57 kg/125.5 lbs. – Tony Ramos, Iowa City, Iowa (Titan Mercury WC/Hawkeye WC)
lost to Bekhbayar Erdenebat (Mongolia), 4-7
70 kg/154 lbs. – Nick Marable, Morgantown, W.Va. (Sunkist Kids)
dec. Akzurek Tantarov (Kazakhstan), 2-1
dec. Grigor Grigoryan (Armenia), 4-2
lost to Ali Shabanov (Belarus), 5-2
86 kg/189 lbs. – Ed Ruth, State College, Pa. (Nittany Lion WC)
dec. Yusup Melejaev (Turkmenistan), 12-2
lost to Askari Mohammadian (Iran), 4-7
125 kg/275 lbs. – Tervel Dlagnev, Columbus, Ohio (Sunkist Kids/Ohio RTC) – Bronze Medal
dec. Aleksandr Romanov (Moldova), 11-1
dec. Soslan Gagloev (Slovakia), 5-0
lost to Taha Akgul (Turkey), 2-4
dec. Aslan Dzebisov (Azerbaijan), 3-1
dec. Alexei Shemarov (Belarus), 2-1