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Top Teams From The 2022 Wrestling World Championships

Photo: Tony Rotundo

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The 2022 World Championships have wrapped up in Belgrade and with that there have been some exciting performances even with the absence of the Russian and Belarus athletes.

Honorable Mentions-

Kyrgyzstan- Two World Champions

Azerbaijan- One World Champ, and multiple medalists

#5 Iran

Iran underperformed a bit this tournament, they still came away with two World Champions either way so thats that. Rahman Amouzad (65kg) and Kamran Ghasempour (92kg) both won gold medals in the freestyle division.

A few guys had rough tournaments, mainly Mohammad Mohammadian up at 97kg falling to Snyder and losing again in his bronze medal match. Mohammadreza Geraei falling in the world finals to Mate Nemes was possibly one of the biggest upsets of the tournament as well.

Looking into the future they have a lot of bright young stars so they will be looking at some big years in the near future. Guys like Hassan Yazdani, Amir Yazdani, Amir Zare, Rahman Amouzad, Kamran Ghasempour and more are all young and have some very bright futures on the senior level.

#4 Serbia

Nobody expected much from Serbia coming into competition, but wow did they show up crowning four champions in the Greco-Roman division. Sebastian Nad, Mate Nemes, Ali Arsalan, and Zurab Datunashvili all won gold. On the freestyle side Stevan Micic won bronze down at 57kg.

As the host nation this was massive for them, Khetik Tsabolov was competing for Serbia at 74kg but lost to Frank Chamizo in the quarters. When Chamizo lost he was eliminated which was unfortunate.

#3 Turkey

Turkey took advantage of everything they could this tournament. The biggest event was Riza Kayaalp claiming his 5th world title making him only the 16th Greco-Roman wrestler ever to accomplish this feat.

On the women’s side of things Yasemin Adar won gold at 76kg, and on the men’s freestyle side of things Taha Akgul finally reclaimed his title of Champion after 7 long years.

Burhan Akbudak won gold in the Greco-Roman division at 82kg while they claimed 3 more bronze medals at the World Championships.

#2 Japan

7 World Champions and 13 totals medals from the World Championships. Japan showed up big time as expected. On the women’s side of things the biggest match came when 21 year old Tsugumi Sakurai knocked off the United States Helen Maroulis moving up a weight class and won her second world title.

Yui Susaki took care of business as expected and was not touched during her run to yet another world title. Other women’s wrestlers to win titles were Nonoka Ozaki at 62kg, Mayu Mukaida at 55kg, and Miwa Morikawa at 65kg.

On the men’s side of things the return of Rei Higuchi did not disappoint as he was able to finally claim his first world title. Taishi Narikuni was able to cap off his phenomenal run with a world title as well giving Japan 7 gold medals.

Reigning Olympic Champion Takuto Otoguro is still out with injury so that is a big what if for the team. His return will be highly anticipated as 65kg crowned a new champion this weekend and he will have to regain his throne.

#1 United States

The USA wrestled great in the men’s and women’s freestyle side of things picking up 7 gold medals and 15 in total.

Jordan Burroughs won his 7th world and olympic title to become the most decorated wrestler in American history surpassing John Smith.

David Taylor was able to put the doubt to rest. After falling in the world finals this past year to Yazdani some people thought he was done, Taylor had other plans as he put on possibly the most impressive display this entire tournament taking out Hassan Yazdani 7-1.

Kyle Dake was able to win his 4th world title going 4 for 4 at the World Championships throughout the course of his career.

Zain Retherford and Yianni Diakomihalis pick up the first medal of their senior level careers which is nice to see for the future of this time at 65 and 70kg.

Thomas Gilman took silver to Zelimkhan Abakarov of Albania. There is not much to say about this one to be honest except for Abakarov was the better wrestler.

Kyle Snyder is finally back on top. No Sadulaev, but that being said seeing Snyder at the top of the podium again for the first time since 2017 is nice. Snyder and Sadulaev exchanged some words on Instagram as well.

J’den Cox picked up a silver medal at the World Championships falling to reigning champ Kamran Ghasempour. Cox looked good this match but Ghasempour is the real deal and this will be a fun rivalry for years to come.

On the women’s side of things history has been made with Amit Elor becoming the youngest American wrestler ever to win a world title at just 18 years old.

Tamyra Mensah-Stock regains her crown at 68kg with a massive fall over Ami Ishii of Japan in the finals.

Helen Maroulis lost to one of Japan’s young phenoms Tsugumi Sakurai, and this may just be a changing of the guards moment unless Maroulis can get back on track.

Dom Parrish is another big story making her first world team this year and winning a world title, which was also the first for the United States in Belgrade.

On the Greco-Roman side of things there is not much to talk about. Some rough draws and maybe not so good performances. Max Nowry did place 5th at 55kg.

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