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Preview World Championships U66kg
24 Aug 2015 22:00
Sixty men will fight for the gold medal U66kg including triple World Champion Masashi Ebinuma. He is among the favourites, but it doesn’t mean he is the outspoken title candidate. Ebinuma did show himself much this season. He simply did his job, won the national title and remembered his last international fights as a lesson. After his world title he lost in the team event against Khan-Magomedov, a wise lesson. At the Grand Slam in Tokyo in 2014 he lost to countrymen Abe and Kengo Takaichi.
The second Japanese competitor in this class won bronze at the IJF Masters where he lost to Davaadorj Tumurkhuleg (MGL), another favourite. On the other hand, he defeated the Mongolian in Düsseldorf. Takaichi can get to the final stage if he can defeat strong rivals such as Mikhail Pulyaev in the quarter final, or earlier Sugoi Uriarte in his first heavy match.
Tumurkhuleg is a canidate to reach the semi final in a rather weak pool compared to the other side where in Pool A World Ranking leader Georgii Zantaraia is first seeded. European Games silver medallist Loic Korval could be another opponent, if he can beat strong Kazakh Azamat Mukanov.
In Pool B Dzmitry Shershan is best seeded but with An Ba-Ul of Korea he has a huge opponent to deal with. Not even speaking about European Games winner Kamal Khan-Magomedov who won the World bronze medal in Chelyabinsk in 2014. Khan-Magomedov may be the strongest in this pool of death. First he has to overcome legendary Mongolian Khashbaatar Tsagaanbaatar who stepped back for this occasion U66kg.
The winner will reach the quarter final and meet with Ebinuma Masashi who will likely have to defeat Charles Chibana, or Ma Duanbin and perhaps Rishod Sobirov, the double World Champion U60kg, almost in another time. Some of that generation have now stepped up from U60 to U66kg.
This category is highly competitive and super interesting. Last year Ebinuma defeated Mikhail Pulyaev in the final, Zantaraia and Khan-Magomedov took bronze. In that respect not much has changed in the line-up of favourites.
Watch all statistics for each individual match here
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