If successful later today, Ildar Hafizov (60 kg, Army/WCAP) will become the first US athlete to earn a Greco-Roman medal at a Military World event in four years.
Day 1 of Greco-Roman at the 2019 CISM World Military Games began at 10:00am local time in Wuhan City, China (10:00pm ET on October 22).
Just over a month following their performances at the Senior World Championships in Kazakhstan, Hafizov and Ellis Coleman (67 kg, Army/WCAP, world no. 14) were back in action on Wednesday morning. The circumstances are reminiscent of 2017. Two years ago, both Hafizov and Coleman competed at the Paris Worlds, and within a short turnaround, were in Lithuania for the CISM event.
In that tournament, Hafizov went 2-2 and wound up fifth after falling in the bronze round. The difference this time is that Hafizov not only won his first two bouts, he collected a major scalp in the process. First up was Abdennour Laouni (ALG), and it was a one-sided technical fall. Hafizov had gained a point (passive) and then turned Laouni five times to wrap it up. Next on the docket was 2018 World bronze Sailike Walihan from host country China. Again, it was that first period. Hafizov earned four in the frame, Walihan, one, and there was no further scoring, as Hafizov moved on with a 4-1 decision.
The quest for a possible gold ended in the semifinals. Two-time Asian Championships silver Ri Se-Ung (PRK) collected seven points in the first and the scoring was capped from then on save for a Hafizov point, sending the US rep to the bronze round later today. He will face either 2018 Junior World silver Tigran Minasyan of Armenia or Helary Maegisalu (EST).
Coleman started off with Pang Jin-Chol (PRK) and ended the bout in the first period. The scoring presumably came from a passive and succession of turns, resulting in a 9-0 tech win for the American. The proceeding round availed an athlete Coleman will very likely have to contend with in March at the Pan Am Olympic Qualifier — Joilson de brito Ramos (BRA). The pair last locked up at the 2018 Pan Am Championships with de brito Ramos earning a close decision. It went that way again on Wednesday. Coleman picked up three points in the first, but de brito Ramos scored four in the second to triumph 4-3.
The bronze medal round for Hafizov begins at 6:20pm in Wuhan City (6:20am ET). The last American to come home from a CISM tournament with hardware was Harry Lester, who took second at the ’15 Military World Games at 75 kilos. The year prior saw Bryce Saddoris grab silver (66 kg), Jon Anderson (Army/WCAP) place second (75 kg), and David Arendt (130 kg) earn bronze.
- A stream of the event has thus far proven elusive, though China Central Television is (reportedly) broadcasting the Military World Games over their 5G network rendered on 8K HD television.
- The US does not have competitors for 77 and 87 kg. Daniel Miller (97 kg, Marines) and Toby Erickson (130 kg, Army/WCAP) are the next American pairing to take the mat (Thursday).
2019 CISM World Military Games
October 23-24 — Wuhan City, China
TEAM USA DAY 1 RESULTS
60 kg — Ildar Hafizov (Army/WCAP)
WON Abdennour Laouni (ALG) 11-1, TF
WON Sailike Walihan (CHN) 4-1
LOSS Ri Se-Ung (PRK) 7-1
vs. Tigran Minasyan (ARM) or Helary Maegisalu (EST)
67 kg — Ellis Coleman (Army/WCAP)
WON Pang Jin-Chol (PRK) 9-0, TF
LOSS Joilson de brito Ramos (BRA) 4-3