Turkey steals team title from Azerbaijan

Edwin  - CEO February 15, 2024
Updated 2024/02/15 at 10:46 AM
7 Min Read
72kg GR - Selcuk Can (TUR) df. Ulvi Ganizade (AZE) Photo credit: UWW
72kg GR - Selcuk Can (TUR) df. Ulvi Ganizade (AZE) Photo credit: UWW

Wins the Greco-Roman title by five points over Azerbaijan


Selcuk CAN (TUR)Selcuk CAN (TUR) won his first-ever European Championships gold medal. (Photo: UWW / Kadir Caliskan)


Ulvi GANIZADE (AZE) had a positive head-to-head record against Selcuk CAN (TUR) from their previous meetings. Whether it was last year’s European Championships or the 2022 World Championships, Ganizade defeated Can by a one-point difference, Vinay Siwach reports for UWW.


On Wednesday, as the two met in the European Championships final at 72kg in Bucharest, Romania, Can ensured he didn’t let Ganizade dominate and blanked the Azerbaijan wrestler 2-0 to win his first-ever European gold medal.


Can’s gold and teenager Alperen BERBER’s (TUR) dream run to the 82kg gold medal helped Turkiye win the Greco-Roman title by five points over Azerbaijan, who also had two champions on Wednesday.


The 97kg gold medal was defended by Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) in a come-from-behind victory over Magomed MURTAZALIEV (AIN) in the final. Armenia finished third in the team race.


Can and Ganizade were aggressive from the first whistle in the final but it was the former who was awarded the par terre advantage. Ganizade did well to defend from par terre and not let Can score any points.


In the second period, Ganizade would have hoped to get a par terre advantage but in a rare case, Can was awarded the second par terre advantage as well, making his lead 2-0 which remained the final score.


Alperen BERBER (TUR)Alperen BERBER (TUR) celebrates after winning the 82kg gold medal for Turkiye. (Photo: UWW / Kadir Caliskan)


U20 world champion Berber’s gold was not a big shot in the arm for him, but it helped Turkiye win the team title. Facing Islam ALIEV (AIN) in the final, Berber scored exposure on the edge of the zone for two points which he was awarded after a challenge. He was then awarded the par terre advantage as he led 3-0.


Aliev tried hard to attack but Berber wasn’t allowing him to penetrate. Aliev challenged for a singlet-foul which was confirmed on review. A big move from Aliev was deemed a stepout for Berber who was now running away with the gold.


Aliev was giving the par terre advantage late in the second period but he failed to score from par terre and Berber held on to his 4-3 lead.


Nihat MAMMADLI (AZE)Nihat MAMMADLI (AZE) defeated Victor CIOBANU (MDA) to win the 60kg gold medal. (Photo: UWW / Kostadin Andonov)


Azerbaijan’s two gold medals came with Nihat MAMMADLI (AZE) and Hasrat JAFAROV (AZE), both students of coach Hassan ALIYEV.  Mammadli stunned Victor CIOBANU (MDA) in the 60kg final 8-3 while Jafarov showed why he is regarded as high, beating Ruslan BICHURIN (AIN), 8-5 in the 67kg final.


Ciobanu was awarded the par terre advantage in the first period but he failed to score any points. Mammadli managed to open his account with a stepout which put him in a 1-1 criteria lead. He gripped Ciobanu by his back and added two more points, leading 3-1 at the break.


Ciobanu used a similar move which Mammadli tried to throw off but Ciobanu ended up scoring a takedown in the zone. Mammadli was cross footed by Ciobanu but the foot had landed outsided the zone which gave Mammadli a point. Ciobanu challenged only to lose it. Mammadli got two points from a pass-by which looked Ciobanu’s defense but as he did not have a challenge, Mammadli was awarded two points, swelling his lead to 7-3. A stepout confirmed an 8-3 win for Mammadli.


Hasrat JAFAROV (AZE)Hasrat JAFAROV (AZE) hits a four on Ruslan BICHURIN (AIN) in the 67kg final. (Photo: UWW / Kostadin Andonov)


Jafarov followed that with an even more impressive win in the 67kg final. Wrestling Bichurin, Jafarov led 1-0 at the break and gave up exposure in the second period, falling behind 3-1. A reversal made it 3-2.


A third passivity was confirmed in the final with a minute and six seconds left and that is Jafarov ran away with the match. He hit a magical four-pointer and as Bichurin tried a head-pinch in the same sequence, Jafarov held Bichurin on his back, getting two more points.


The world silver medalist now has two back-to-back European Championships titles.


Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM)Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) won his seventh European title on Wednesday. (Photo: UWW / Kadir Caliskan)


For Aleksanyan, who won his seventh title, Murtazaliev did prove to be a big challenge as he scored a takedown and then led 3-0 as he got a par terre.


But once Aleksanyan got the par terre advantage in the second period, he pulled off a powerful gut wrench to lead 3-3 on criteria which he made 4-3 when Murtazaliev challenged for a leg foul and lost.


Aleksanyan scored a takedown towards the end, confirming yet another gold medal, five months after suffering a heartbreaking loss in the World Championships final.




GOLD: Nihat MAMMADLI (AZE) df. Victor CIOBANU (MDA), 8-3

BRONZE: Sadyk LALAEV (AIN) df. Georgij TIBILOV (SRB), 2-1
BRONZE: Razvan ARNAUT (ROU) df. Justas PETRAVICIUS (LTU), 10-0


GOLD: Hasrat JAFAROV (AZE) df. Ruslan BICHURIN (AIN), 8-5

BRONZE: Abu AMAEV (BUL) df. Morten THORESEN (NOR), 8-5
BRONZE: Murat FIRAT (TUR) df. Slavik GALSTYAN (ARM), 5-4


GOLD: Selcuk CAN (TUR) df. Ulvi GANIZADE (AZE), 2-0

BRONZE: Narek OGANIAN (AIN) df. Krisztian VANCZA (HUN), 3-1
BRONZE: Parviz NASIBOV (UKR) df. Mamadassa SYLLA (FRA), 5-0


GOLD: Alperen BERBER (TUR) df. Islam ALIEV (AIN), 4-3




BRONZE: Kiril MILOV (BUL) df. Arvi SAVOLAINEN (FIN), via fall (8-0)
BRONZE: Abubakar KHASLAKHANAU (AIN) df. Beytullah KAYISDAG (TUR), 8-0


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