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Magical Moldova Scoop Two Golds but it’s Ukraine who are Almost Unstoppable as the Kings and Queens are Coronated on Cousteau Beach

June 29, 2024
France 2024
The final day in France writes history in a now Saint-Laurent-du-Var classic. With multiple newcomers atop the podium, the second tournament of the series concludes as one to remember for many.

The sand is just starting to settle after a ferocious final day here in sensational Saint-Laurent-du-Var with the champions crowned and the champagne sprayed. This stop had it all with debutant medallists, epic comebacks and no shortage of that special beach wrestling vibe that really does make this the greatest show on sand.

History was made for several nations, including a first-ever Beach Wrestling World Series medal for Slovenia, a 3-medal haul for Team USA and Moldova picking up double gold but let’s dive right into the action and recap how the medals were won. In the women’s 50kg category, Viktoriia SLOBODENIUK picked up the first of Ukraine’s four gold medals as she came out on top over American debutant Mariah ANDERSON. A closely contested final match 2-0 ended in much to the delight of the large Ukrainian contingent sandside. In the women’s 50kg category, Viktoriia SLOBODENIUK picked up the first of Ukraine’s four gold medals as she came out on top over American debutant Mariah ANDERSON. A closely contested final match 2-0 ended in much to the delight of the large Ukrainian contingent sandside. Romanian Ana Maria PIRVU should also be happy with her weekend’s work after a few years hiatus from the series as she secured the bronze overcoming Yuliia ZASULSKA (UKR) 3-0 in the 3-4 place match.

The Ukrainian contingent was on their feet cheering for victory again in the women’s 60kg category as bronze medallist in Mexico and one of the favourites for the overall title. Anastasiya KRAVCHENKO secured her third Beach Wrestling World Series gold and her country’s second of the event as she narrowly overcame Victoria BAEZ (ESP) 1-0 in a cagey final match. The 3-4th placed match saw history made as Mihaela CIRIC became Slovenia’s first-ever Series medallist as she picked up the bronze with a win over Sofiia BORDINSKYKH (UKR). However, BORDINSKYKH did go home with a prize as she claimed the women’s Top Technique Award for the stop with a stunning leg sweep.

In the women’s 70kg, Team Ukraine looked to claim gold number three of the day, and few would have bet against them given that they had 3 out of the 4 semi-finalists, including reigning World Series champion Oksana HERHEL. HERHEL did reach the final, but she would have to be content with silver as compatriot Viktoriia HRYTSENKO came from behind to win 3-1 and take the top step on the podium. The opening minute and a half of the 3-4th placed match looked like it would lead to a clean sweep of medals for Ukraine, but Dimitra ANDROUTSOU of Greece showed great spirit and a never-say-die attitude to come back from 0-2 down to level at 2-2 and take the bronze on the last point scored tiebreaker.

Team USA had never won Beach Wrestling World Series gold until leg 4 in Constanta, Romania in the 2023 edition when Eliana BOMMARITO was the woman to end that gold drought. From there, the talented American has made the women’s +70kg her own, winning the World Series outright last year with a second gold in the finals in Turkey. Making a fine return to the Beach Wrestling World Series here in France after having missed out on Mexico, she’s made up for lost time by taking home gold in the category with a dominant performance in the final as she swept aside Liudmyla PAVLOVETS TYCHYNA (UKR) 3-0 in just 44 seconds. Ukrainian Iryna PASICHNYK marked her return to the sandy circles with a bronze as she beat Stefania ZACHEILA (GRE) in the 3-4th placed match.

© Jaoua Henry - 50kg Women's, Viktoriia Slobodeniuk (UKR) df. Mariah Ann Anderson (USA) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - 60kg Women's Maria Victoria Baez Dilone (ESP) df. Francesca Indelicato (ITA) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - 70kg Women's, Viktoriia Hrytsenko (UKR) df. Dimitra Androutsou (GRE) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - +70kg Women's, Eliana Rose Bommarito (USA) df. Liudmyla Pavlovets Tychyna (UKR) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - Team Argentinia Supporters in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.

Defending men’s 70kg champion Oleskii BORUTA also missed on Mexico, and was making his return to the series and the unstoppable Ukrainian showed why he’s the man to beat in the category with his country’s fourth gold of the event, overpowering Romania’s Stefan Ionut COMAN 2-0 in the final. The 3-4th placed match saw home-sand hero Frenchman Quentin STICKER get some tremendous backing from the home crowd and it looked like he was going to take the bronze, but Ivan SEMENOV (UKR) had other ideas as he roared back from 2 points down to take the win 3-2 in the last second.

The men’s 80kg category defending champ Hugo CUENOT (FRA) reached the semi-finals but will be disappointed not to leave with at least a bronze for his efforts as he lost out to the powerful Moldovan Vasile DIACON in the semi-final before losing out to Alberto MARTINEZ NAVARRO (ESP) in the 3-4th placed match for Bronze. DIACON took the confidence from a win over the reigning champ and with the loud chants and cheers of his teammates echoing around the arena, he captured his first Beach Wrestling World Series gold beating Christos CHRISTOFORIDIS (GRE) in the final 2-0.

It looked like Ibrahim YUSUBOV (AZE) was in the driving seat in the men’s 90kg category as the back-to-back reigning champion reached the final with minimal fuss, only one of his matches lasting slightly more than a minute. The final itself didn’t last over a minute either, but despite YUSUBOV taking the lead 1-0 it was Moldovan Traian CAPATINA who levelled the scoring before landing a sensational 3-point move that saw him take home the gold after only 48 seconds, making it a magical double gold for Moldova. Ukraine added to their massive medal haul with another bronze added to the total when Oleksii YAKOVCHUK also took 48 seconds to claim his win in the 3-4th place match v fellow Ukrainian Demid KARACHENKO.

Mamuka KORDZAIA was the sole Georgian at the event, but the men’s +90kg 2023 World Silver Medallist will be over the moon with another gold for his collection as he came top of the round-robin group to take first place, winning all four of his matches. There was a final medal of the day for the unreal Ukrainians when Vazha DAIAURI finished in the silver spot in second place. The bronze saw another Team USA member Kyle FERRITER help his team make history with their first-ever 3 medal haul from a single event as he impressed to finish in third place!

What a day, what a stop! Another fantastic leg comes to an end, but it won’t be long till the sand starts flying again as the Beach Wrestling World Series continues next month in Timisoara, Romania on the 20-21 July when the Series reaches the halfway point. With that said, even more excitement awaits the World Series as a final stop location is now confirmed — Calling Croatia! The Beach Wrestling World Series’ fifth and final stop makes a return to beautiful Croatia just five years since our first year of competition when we were in Zagreb. Finals are set to take place in Plava Laguna on the serene Istrian Peninsula coastal town in Poreč, October 12-13. Until then, be sure to stay tuned for more news about the series’ coming stops.

 

© Jaoua Henry - 70kg Men's, Oleksii Boruta (UKR) df. Stefan Ionut Coman (ROU) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - 80kg Men's Vasile Diacon (MDA) df. Christos Christoforidis (GRE) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - 90kg Men's Traian Capatina (MDA) df. Ibrahim Yusubov (AZE) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - +90kg Men's - Mamuka Kordzaia (GEO) df. Quentin Michel Arthur Milliere (FRA) in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.
© Jaoua Henry - Champagne Shower in Saint-Laurent-Du-Var, France, on June 28, 2024.

Results Beach Wrestling World Series Saint-Laurent-du-Var

Women 

50kg

1. Viktoriia SLOBODENIUK (UKR)
2. Mariah ANDERSON (USA)
3. Ana Maria PIRVU (ROU)

60kg

  1. Anastasiya KRAVCHENKO (UKR)
  2. Victoria BAEZ (ESP)
  3. Miheala CIRIC (SLO)

70kg

  1. Viktoriia HYRTSENKO (UKR)
  2. Oksana HERHEL (UKR)
  3. Dimitra ANDROUTSOU (GRE)

+70kg

  1. Eliana BOMMARITO (USA)
  2. Liudmyla PAVLOVETS TYCHYNA (UKR)
  3. Iryna PASICHNYK (UKR)

Men

70kg 

  1. Oleksii BORUTA (UKR)
  2. Stefan Ionut COMAN (ROU)
  3. Ivan SEMENOV (UKR)

80kg

  1. Vasile DIACON (MDA)
  2. Christos CHRISTOFORIDIS (GRE)
  3. Alberto MARTINEZ NAVARRO (ESP)

90kg 

  1. Traian CAPATINA (MDA)
  2. Ibrahim YUSUBOV (AZE)
  3. Oleksii YAKOVCHUK (UKR)

+90kg

  1. Mamuka KORDZAIA
  2. Vazha DAIAURI (UKR)
  3. Kyle FERRITER (USA)

Men’s top technique – Carlos ALVAREZ (70kg ESP)
Women’s top technique - Sofiia BORDINSKYKH (60kg UKR)

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