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The winning will continue, says Turkmen coach Rejepberdiyew

23 September, 2017 (20:00)
Tags: Wrestling, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

All belts are off at Ashgabat 2017 as are the traditional pants worn in Pahlavani wrestling and the Judo shirts used in Belt Wrestling.

Instead Wrestling at the Ashgabat 2017 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games moves to spandex as competition in the Olympic Freestyle and Greco Roman styles begins with wrestlers from countries such as Indonesia, the People's Republic of China, Australia, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Sri Lanka, Guam and the Federated States of Micronesia joining the fray.

The new participants will make the Wrestling competition at Ashgabat 2017, when it starts on Sunday 24 September with Freestyle for men and women, a more colourful and diverse event.

That may be the case but the host nation believes the results will not be so different.

"The team of Turkmenistan wrestlers is of a high level. I believe that they can continue winning when Wrestling starts," said Setdarberdi Rejepberdiyew, one of the main coaches for the host nation.

"If I could give an advice to them, it would be: 'All of Turkmenistan believes in you, so use that power, try to be worthy of the support, and wrestle hard'."

Turkmenistan has gained the majority of its dominant medal haul at Ashgabat 2017 from the two Wrestling competitions so far held, although the new competition moves away from the more traditional styles of the first two competitions - Traditional Wrestling and Belt Wrestling.

But Rejepberdiyew said there is a particular Turkmen trait that will hold them in good stead in the new competition.

"Turkmen do not like being defeated. They don't like to kneel in any sports. That is why in Belt Wrestling we have a rule, if any athlete uses his knee to stop a fall, he or she loses a point. I believe that Wrestling will add more medals to our haul,” he said.

Wrestling kicks off with eight weight classes (men's, 57kg, 65kg, 74kg, 97kg and women's 48kg, 55kg, 60,kg, 69kg) on Sunday 24 September.


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