Russia unveiled its Greco-Roman lineup for the 2019 World Championships earlier today and there is only one surprise to be found.
Getting the nod at 87 kilograms is Aleksandr Komarov, the former age-group wonder who has made a consistent impact throughout this, his first season of Senior competition. The 21-year-old earned two Cadet World titles before repeating the feat on the Junior level, where he won his second crown last year by defeating rising US prospect and U23 World Team member Andrew Berreyesa (82 kg, NYAC/FLWC) in the final.
Komarov started his 2018-19 campaign with a win at Sweden’s Haparanda Cup and prevailed at the Russian Nationals a month later. Next came an impressive tournament victory at the Petrov (Bulgaria) followed by a third at the European Championships. However — all of those performances took place at 82 kilograms. It wasn’t until Komarov emerged victorious in the 87-kilogram category at the Grand Prix of Germany last month when questions about his weight class for Nur-Sultan had begun to surface. In Dortmund, Komarov finished above both 2016 Olympic Champion Davit Chakvetadze and former Junior/Military World gold Sosruko Kodzokov, defeating the latter in the final round — thus (apparently) proving his viability to the Russian program at an Olympic weight heading into a qualifying World event.
Five of Russia’s six World champs from ’18 are back with the exception being Aleksandr Cherkhirkin, who is replaced by two-time Olympic/World gold Roman Vlasov (world no. 8). Despite rumors putting Stepan Maryanyan (world no. 1) at 60 kilos, he is listed for Kazakhstan at 63, leaving it up to Sergey Emelin (world no. 1) to nail down a top-six showing, or higher.
Abuyazid Mantsigov (72 kg, world no. 4), a titlist at Junior in ’13, is also expected to be a major threat. At the ’18 Worlds, Mantsigov wound up fifth with his two losses coming against eventual champ Frank Staebler (GER, world no. 1) and Rasul Chunayev (AZE, world no. 10), respectively. Chunayev, of course, was himself a World Champion in ’15, an Olympic bronze in ’16, and owns four World-level medals altogether. Staebler has already committed to 67 kilograms ahead of this year’s tournament while Chunayev’s weight class is still unknown.
Greco-Roman at the 2019 World Championships begins on Saturday, September 14th live from Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan and can be viewed live in the US on Trackwrestling (subscription required).
- Two 2019 US World Team members, Ellis Coleman (67 kg, Army/WCAP, world no. 17)) and Adam Coon (130 kg, Cliff Keen, world no. 2), dropped matches to Russian counterparts at last year’s World Championships. Coleman was edged by Artem Surkov (world no. 1) 3-1 in the round-of-16; and Coon was tech’ed by Sergey Semenov (world no. 1) in the finals.
- Combined, Russia’s roster is responsible for 13 Senior World medals (including nine golds) and 14 age-group World medals (with eight Junior World golds).
- The five Russian athletes with World titles from ’18 are all ranked #1 by United World Wrestling, and will receive top seeds at the World Championships. Mantigov is currently in line to be seeded 4th at 72 kilograms.
*Returning World Champion
55 kg: Vitaly Kabaloev (2018 U23 World silver, ’19 European Championships gold)
*60 kg: Sergey Emelin (2018 World Champion, ’17 U23 World silver, ’14 Junior World bronze)
*63 kg: Stepan Maryanyan (2018 World Champion, ’17 World bronze, ’10 Junior World Champion, 2019 European Championships gold, two-time European Games gold)
*67 kg: Artem Surkov (2018 World Champion, two-time World bronze, three-time European Championships gold)
72 kg: Abuyazid Mantsigov (2013 Junior World Champion, 2019 European Championships gold, ’17 European Championships bronze)
77 kg: Roman Vlasov (Two-time Olympic Champion, two-time World Champion, four-time European Championships gold, two-time Junior World Champion)
82 kg: Adlan Akiev (2017 European Championships bronze, ’19 German Grand Prix gold)
87 kg: Alexander Komarov (Two-time Junior World Champion, two-time Cadet World Champion, ’19 European Championships gold)
*97 kg: Musa Evloev (2018 World Champion, ’19 European Championships gold, ’13 Junior World Champion)
*130 kg: Sergey Semenov (2018 World Champion, ’16 Olympic bronze, ’17 U23 World Champion, ’13 Junior World Champion, ’15 Junior World silver)