2016 Olympics

Thielke and Bisek victorious in first matches

thielke bisek
Photo: John Sachs

The first steps are out of the way.

Jesse Thielke (USA, world no. 19, 59 kg) and Andy Bisek (USA, world no. 5, 75 kg) have their first Rio wins logged in the books. Thielke went against Mehdi Messaoudi (MAR) while Bisek battled familiar foe Yurisandi Hernandez (CUB). Thielke couldn’t do much with Messaoudi initially, as the Moroccan kept to a tight game, blocking any clear openings for Thielke to measure in on. A quick duck by Thielke was blocked before the American pushed the action inside once more. Messaoudi was knocked for passive eventually, and that is where he found his demise.

Thielke wrapped around and locked on a gut. As soon as he rolled once, you could tell more was to come. Thielke nailed three more turns to come away with an 8-0 tech before a full bead of sweat had even dripped from his brow. He’ll next face two-time Olympic silver medalist and 2011 World Champion Rovshan Bayramov (AZE, world no. 2) in the quarterfinals.

Bisek charged in and charged in, but Hernandez showed up with a little chutzpah of his own. The action remained scoreless going into the second. Bisek, who is one of the best offensive par terre wrestlers at his weight in the world, couldn’t get the traction he needed to put offensive points up. He wouldn’t need to. Midway through the second, Hernandez was penalized for being passive, giving Bisek the 1-0 score he would hold onto. Bisek now faces prior Olympian and multiple-time World medalist Selcuk Cebi in the quarters.

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