ISTANBUL (September 16) – Yoshiko Inoue notched three wins against a semifinal loss to take a bronze medal at 67kg on the final day of women's events at the senior wrestling world championships.
Inoue won her first medal in her third trip to the senior world meet, but missed a shot at the championship final when she lost in the semifinals to Oyunsuren Banzyragch (MGL) – an opponent she had defeated in the finals of the Asian championships in May.
Oyunsuren later lost to Chinese national team newcomer Xi Luozhuoma (CHN) in the championship final.
Meanwhile at 72kg, former five-time world champion Kyoko Hamaguchi kicked off with a win but could not find an opening against lOhenewa Akuffo (CAN) and fell in the second round. Akuffo lost in the quarterfinals, knocking Hamaguchi, who had to settle for 13th place overall, out medal contention.
Still, with the conclusion of the women's events, Japan won the team competition with 52 points from three individual champions and two bronze medals. Canada was second with 33 points, followed by Mongolia with 32 points.
On the final day of women's wrestling, the men's freestyle competition also got under way with action in the 55kg category. Shinichi Yumoto advanced to the quarterfinals before being bumped out of the tourney and had to settle for eighth place overall.
67kg – INOUE, Yoshiko (Bronze, 14 entries)
R1 – df. Sarah Jones (GBR), 2-0 (2-0, 2-0)
Yoshiko racks up a win with a series of single-leg takedowns against the bronze medal winner at the Commonwealth championships in August.
R2 – df. Nadya Sementsova (AZE), 2-1 (1-0, 0-1, 1-0)
Inoue takes the first period from the two-time European champ with a single-leg and uses the same technique again in the third period for the win.
SF – lost to Oyunsuren Banzyragch (MGL), 0-2 (0-1=2:13, 0-2)
Inoue wins the draw for the clinch in the first period, but loses her grip and allows Oyunsuren to get behind for the win. She surrenders a pair of takedowns in the second as her opponent avenges a loss to Inoue at the Asian championships in May.
F3 – df. Alina Makhhynia (UKR), 2-0 (1-0, 1-0)
Inoue scores early in both periods with leg attacks and makes the points stand for the win and the bronze medal.
72kg – HAMAGUCHI, Kyoko (13th, 31 entries)
R1 – df. Jaresmit Weffer (VEN), 2-0 (1-0, 2-1)
Hamaguchi scores with a single-leg late in the first period, then spins behind twice in the second to come from behind and secure the win.
R2 – lost to Ohenewa Akuffo (CAN), 2-1 (1-2, 1-0=2:02, 0-1=2:05)
Hamaguchi takes the lead midway through the first period, but gives up a point going out of bounds, then loses a challenge to give last year's world runner-up the period. Hamaguchi wins the draw and the clinch in the second, only to lose the draw, clinch and match in the third.
Hamaguchi is eliminated from medal contention and a chance at an Olympic berth when Akuffo falls in the quarterfinals to Ali Bernard (USA).
55kg – YUMOTO, Shinichi (8th, 45 entries)
R1 – df. Youri Ledenov (UKR), 2-0 (1x-1=last, 6-0=0:58)
Yumoto recovers from a slow start and scores the last point of the first period to take the lead. In the second period, Yumoto comes out firing with a force-out and single-leg which he converts for a cross-ankle turn and extra points against the 2009 World Cup individual winner.
R2 – df. Ahmet Peker (TUR), 2-1 (0-3, 6-1, 3-1)
Yumoto is dropped for three points in the first period, but rallies against the two-time former junior world champ with a single-leg and big lift in the second. A pair of low singles in the third pave the wave for the win.
R3 – df. Naranbaatar Bayaraa (MGL), 2-0 (6-0=1:59, 5-3)
Yumoto goes behind off a low single attempt and tilts twice for the technical in the first period, then racks up the second with a pair of gut wrenches against the 2007 world silver medalist.
R4 – lost to Nick Simmons (USA), 0-2 (4-7, 5-6)
Yumoto takes the early lead with a low single and ankle turn (2-0), but Simmons comes back with a front headlock (4-2) and his trademark “strangle” hold for exposure (4-4), a five count (4-5) and exposure again (4-7).
The former Pan American champ opens the second with a big drop for three. Yumoto tries to comeback with a pair of low singles, but it's too little, too late.
Yumoto was eliminated from medal contention and a berth at the London Olympics when Simmons loses in the semifinals to Radoslav Velikov (BUL).