SOFIA (August 17-18) – The men’s freestyle team for Japan faltered on the final two days of the junior world wrestling championships, managing only a pair of fifth-place finishes for all their efforts.
Satoshi FUJIKAWA (50kg) and Nobuyoshi TAKOJIMA (66kg), both from Waseda University, were the only Japanese wrestlers to get a sniff of the medals podium at Arena Armeetz in Sofia.
FUJIKAWA fell in his opening bout at 50kg to European junior champion Suleyman ATLI (TUR) but came back with a pair of one-sided wins in the consolation bracket before losing to hometown favorite Mehmed FERAIM (BUL) in the bronze medal final.
TAKOJIMA, meanwhile, posted a pair of wins, but fell to a continental bronze medalist in each of the followings bouts – to David BUZIASHVILI (GEO) in the quarterfinals and to Peyman YARAHMADI (IRI) in the bronze medal final.
The only other wrestler to notch a win for Japan was Rinya NAKAMURA, who won his first bout at 55kg, but then lost to Georgi VANGELOV (BUL), the 2011 junior world runner-up at 50kg.
50kg – FUJIKAWA, Satoshi (5th, 19 entries)
R1 – lost to Suleyman ATLI (TUR), 5-7
c1 – df. Arnold QUIROZ (MEX) by TF, 7-0
c2 – df. Mostafa YAGHOUBIZELETI (IRI) by TF, 7-0
F3 – lost to Mehmed FERAIM (BUL), 0-3
55kg – NAKAMURA, Rinya (11th, 26 entries)
R1 – df. Jonah WHITT (GUM) by TF, 8-0
R2 – lost to Georgi VANGELOV (BUL) by TF, 0-8
60kg – NAKATA, Yo (23rd, 32 entries)
R1 – lost to Heorihi KALIYEU (BLR), 1-7
66kg – TAKOJIMA, Nobuyoshi (5th, 29 entries)
R1 – bye
R2 – df. Damian WOZNIAK (POL) by TF, 8-0
R3 – lost to David BUZIASHVILI (GEO), 4-7
c1 – df. Kevin HENKEL (GER), 7-7 criteria
F3 – lost to Peyman YARAHMADI (IRI), 5-8
74kg – OSANAI, Terumasa (18th, 32 entries)
R1 – lost to Uladzimir KAVALIOU (BLR), 6-10
84kg – SAKURABA, Masayoshi (18th, 32 entries)
R1 – lost to Samuel BROOKS (USA) by TF, 0-7
96kg – YAMAMOTO, Koki (19th, 27 entries)
R1 – lost to Giorgi KAKAURIDZE (GEO), 4-9
120kg – IKEDA, Yuto (12th, 18 entires)
R1 – bye
R2 – lost to Hamlet ABRAHAMYAN (ARM), 2-4