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Beach Wrestlers go for gold in Greece as World Series hits Katerini

September 08, 2021
Ancient Greece is where the sport of Wrestling was invented, and legends created. Throughout the years it’s taken many styles and forces and the latest makes its way to the Olympic cradle as the 3rd leg of the 2021 Beach Wrestling World Series arrives at Paralia Beach on the Aegean Sea this Friday and Saturday.

Hot on the heels of last weekend’s 2nd leg on Lido di Ostia in Rome, 63 competitors from 12 countries will take to the sand over eight weight categories in the penultimate leg of this year’s season looking to earn crucial ranking points to take to Mamaia Beach in Constanta, Romania for the final at the end of the month.

Given Greece’s history with wrestling it is no surprise they come with a strong team of 12 men and 6 women looking to press home home advantage. The glorious Georgians will be looking to bounce back and get back to the form that saw their men’s team clean sweep of all four weight categories in France back in July.  A mixture of injury, illness and being outwrestled saw them miss out on gold completely last week, with 3 silvers and a fourth placed finish over the four weight categories.

In the women’s division the second of our back-to-back weekends will see Stefania Claudia PRINCEPTU (ROU, -50kg) look to make it three wins from three legs as she came out on top again in Rome last weekend. Mehlika OZTURK (TUR, -60kg) will also be looking for her third gold medal in succession after her victory over the Italian Francesca INDELICATO in Rome.

Ukrainian powerhouse Alina BEREZHNA STADNIK MAKHYNIA (-70kg) is looking for a third straight win having had a clean sweep of victories at Lido di Ostia to take the gold and having won gold in France on stop 1. She will face tough opposition from Agoro PAPAVASILEIOU who is on home sand, and in good form having landed a spot on the podium in Rome with a bronze.

Catalina AXENTE (ROU, +70kg) will be looking to do better than the bronze she picked up last weekend. Aikaterini Eirini PITSIAVA (GRE) is also tipped to challenge for a podium position in front of her compatriots in the crowd.

In the men's division Ukrainians Oleksii BORUTA (-70kg) and Vasyl MYKHAILOV (-80kg) broke the Georgians winning streak which had saw them clean sweep the 2019 edition of the World Series. They had also completed a clean sweep of all four weight classes in France back in July, so it was a shock to see them defeated twice within the space of a couple of minutes in Rome last weekend.

Boruta and Mykhailov will be hoping for a similar result this time around but Levan KELEKHSASHVILI (GEO -70kg) and Davit KHUTSISHVILI (GEO, -80kg) will have other ideas as they look to get back to winning ways.

In the -90kg division Pakistan’s former Beach Wrestling World Champion Muhammad INAM notched his first World Series win in Rome and will be looking for more of the same this time round, but he faces a tough battle with Ukrainian Oleksii YAKOVCHUK. Romanian Nicolae PALAGHIA and current World Champion Data MARSAGISHVILI of Georgia all looking to take home the gold.

Reigning World Champion Oyan NAZARIANI of Azerbaijan (+90 kg) who narrowly lost in the semis to the eventual winner last week, will be looking to improve on his bronze medal with Georgia’s Mamuka KORDZAIA who took silver last time out - another one to keep an eye out for.

It promises to be a great weekend of Beach Wrestling and you can watch the drama unfold as it happens with every fight live streamed on website.

Schedule Stop 3, Katerini, GRE
Friday, September 10

11.00-14.00                   Group Phase
17.00-20.00                   Group Phase
Saturday, September 11
11.00-14.00                     Group Phase
17.00-20.00                    Elimination Rounds + Finals

Micheil TSIKOVANI of Greece competes against Ibrahim YUSUBOV of Azerbaijan during the second stop of the UWW Beach Wrestling World Series in Ostia/Rome, Italy on September 03, 2021.
Agoro Papavasileiou of Greece competes against Sara Trbulin of Slovenia during the second stop of the UWW Beach Wrestling World Series in Ostia/Rome, Italy on September 04, 2021.
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