TOKYO (December 23) – World and Olympic champion Kaori ICHO won her first national title at 59kg and received for the first time the award as the outstanding wrestler of the year at the All-Japan national wrestling championships.
ICHO racked up three wins by technical fall, including a 7-0 win over junior world champion Risako KAWAI in the semifinals, for her 10th All-Japan crown overall.
ICHO, who won her eighth world title in September, also took home her first Emperor’s Cup as Japan’s top wrestler in 2013.
Meanwhile, fellow world and Olympic champion Saori YOSHIDA, who won her 11th title at this fall's world meet, struggled in the 55kg final against 2012 junior world champ Chiho HAMADA, but held on for a 4-1 decision. It was YOSHIDA’s 11th all-Japan title.
Also on the final day of competition, Kyoko HAMAGUCHI made a triumphant return to the mat after a 16-month hiatus following the London Olympics, defeating Asia champion Hiroe SUZUKI, 4-2, in the 72kg quarterfinals and 2008 world silver medalist Mami SHINKAI, 5-2, in the final. It was a record 16th all-Japan title for HAMAGUCHI.
In greco-roman, world No.5 Norikatsu SAIKAWA won his third straight title at 96kg and his fifth overall, while national invitational winner at 66kg Hideyuki OTOIZUMI won his first all-Japan crown.
In men’s freestyle, 2006 world bronze medalist Noriyuki TAKATSUKA, whose only other all-Japan title came in 2007, rolled to his second national crown at 60kg. Asia bronze medal winner Tomotsugu ISHIDA repeated as 66kg champion with a 9-6 win over world team member Takahiro INOUE.
The outstanding wrestler awards in each style went to TAKATSUKA (men’s freestyle), SAIKAWA (greco-roman) and world champion Eri TOSAKA (women’s freestyle), who won the 48kg title the previous day.
60kg (17 entries)
F1 – Noriyuki TAKATSUKA df. Katsuyoshi KAWASE by TF, 9-2=5:32
(TAKATSUKA wins 2nd title, 1st in six years)
F3 – Hirotaka ABE df. Shingo ARIMOTO by TF, 7-0=3:40
SF – TAKATSUKA df. Gaku AKAZAWA by TF, 7-0=3:40
SF – KAWASE df. ARIMOTO, 8-3
66kg (19 entries)
F1 – Tomotsugu ISHIDA df. Takahiro INOUE, 9-6
(ISHIDA wins 2nd title, 1st in two years)
F3 – Daichi TAKATANI df. Tatsuya KONDO by TF, 8-0=2:39
SF – INOUE df. Kotaro TANAKA, 5-4
SF – ISHIDA df. Takeya SHINKAWA by TF, 8-0=1:05
66kg (15 entries)
F1 – Hideyuki OTOZUMI df. Ryutaro MATSUMOTO, 5-0
(OTOIZUMI wins 1st title)
F3 – Hiroki NAGASAKI df. Takumi YOKOYAMA by TF, 7-0=0:33
SF – OTOIZUMI df. Takeshi IZUMI byTF, 8-1=5:43
SF – MATSUMOTO df. Takahiro UMENO by TF, 7-0=2:28
96kg (14 entries)
F1 – Norikatsu SAIKAWA df. Yusuke YAMAMOTO by TF, 7-0=2:08
(SAIKAWA wins 3rd straight title at 96kg, 5th title overall)
F3 – Akira OSAKA df. Yasuhiro YONEHIRA, 7-6
SF – SAIKAWA df. OSAKA by TF, 11-0=2:29
SF – YAMAMOTO df. Takuma ARIZONO, 3-1
55kg (16 entries)
F1 – Saori YOSHIDA df. Chiho HAMADA, 4-1
(YOSHIDA wins 11th title, 1st in two years)
F3 – Kanako MURATA df. Yuki IKEGAMI by TF, 11-4=5:54
SF -YOSHIDA df. Yukako KAWAI by fall, 0:30 (4-0)
SF – HAMADA df. MURATA, 9-3
59kg (15 entries)
F1 – Kaori ICHO df. Kazuki SAKAGAMI by TF, 9-0=2:05
(ICHO wins 1st title at 59kg, 10th overall)
F3 – Risako KAWAI df. Yui SAKANO by default, 0:00
SF – ICHO df. KAWAI by TF, 7-0=5:23
SF – SAKAGAMI df SAKANO by TF, 7-0=2:30
72kg (9 entries)
F1 – Kyoko HAMAGUCHI df. Mami SHINKAI, 5-2
(HAMAGUCHI wins 16th title, 1st in two years)
F3 – Hiroe SUZUKI df. Chiaki IIJIMA by default, 0:16 (2-0)
SF – HAMAGUCHI df. Rino ABE by fall, 1:14 (6-0)
SF – SHINKAI df. IIJIMA by fall, 4:39 (5-2)