TAIYUAN, China (April 27) – Atsushi Matsumoto and Takao Isokawa lost in the early rounds of the world qualifying tournament in Taiyuan and now face their last chance to earn a trip to this summer’s Olympic Games next week in Helsinki.
Matsumoto, wrestling at 84kg in men’s freestyle, defeated 2010 Asian Games bronze medalist Purvee Usukbaatar (MGL) in the second round but then fell at 2010 world champion Mihail Ganev (BUL) on a late point in the quarterfinals. Ganev lost in the semifinals, knocking Matsumoto out of medal contention.
At 96kg, Isokawa dropped a second-round match with Jozef Jaloviar (SVK) and fell out of medal contention when the former European junior bronze medalist lost in the quarterfinals to 2010 world champ Khetag Gazumov (AZE).
A total of 50 berths at the London 2012 Olympic Games – 21 each in men’s freestyle and greco-roman, and eight in women’s freestyle – are on offer in Taiyuan. The final world qualifying tourney for wrestling will be held in Helsinki, May 4-6.
Results of bouts involving Japanese entries:
84kg – MATSUMOTO, Atsushi (12th, 27 entries)
R1 – bye
R2 – df. Purvee Usukbaatar (MGL), 2-1 (0-1, 1-0, 3-0)
R3 – lost to Mihail Ganev (BUL), 0-2 (0-1, 2-2x=last)
96kg – ISOKAWA, Takao (17th, 20 entries)
R1 – bye
R2 – lost to Jozef Jaloviar (SVK), 2-0 (1-0, 3-0)