David Taylor had two objectives this 12 months: win Olympic gold, then win a second world title.
Simple sufficient, proper?
Taylor, the 30-year-old males’s freestyle wrestling star for the USA, met his first aim eight weeks in the past in Tokyo by successful gold at 86 kilograms (189 kilos). He scored a takedown with 18 seconds left to defeat Iran’s Hassan Yazdani, 4-3, within the ultimate.
Over the following week, he’ll get a crack on the second a part of his to-do checklist on the 2021 world championships, starting Saturday and persevering with by way of Oct. 10 in Oslo, Norway.
“My plan this complete 12 months was to win the Olympics and win a world championship, even figuring out it was an eight-week turnaround,” Taylor stated final week at a world crew coaching camp. “I’m wanting ahead to the chance to exit and wrestle.”
Sure, eight weeks in the past, USA Wrestling produced a historic efficiency on the Tokyo Olympics, successful 9 medals, which is probably the most by the U.S. at a non-boycotted Video games.
Of the 9, three have been gold: from Taylor, Gable Steveson at 125 kilos (275 kilos), and ladies’s wrestler Tamyra Mensah-Inventory at 68 kilos (150). That’s probably the most by a U.S. Olympic crew since they received three on the 1996 Atlanta Video games.
The 2021 world championships serve as a novel (and fast) follow-up alternative for these high-flying American wrestlers.
“We have to present that we’re constant in what we do, from competitors to competitors,” stated Terry Steiner, the U.S. girls’s freestyle head coach. “Some individuals will have a look at that as stress, however stress is a privilege.
“We’ve put ourselves ready the place persons are speaking concerning the American crew. We must always take that as a praise, and let that push us ahead as an alternative of taking it as a burden.”
Kyle Dake ‘hungry’ to get again on the market
The COVID-19 pandemic pushed the Olympics again a 12 months, however United World Wrestling, the game’s worldwide governing physique, didn’t transfer its 2021 world championship occasion.
As such, USA Wrestling introduced earlier than Tokyo that any U.S. Olympic medalist might decide to compete on the identical weight on the world championships. Of the 9 medalists from Tokyo, eight are competing in Oslo. Steveson, who remains to be a scholar on the College of Minnesota, was the one one to say no.
“It’s like the faculty days,” stated Kyle Dake, a two-time world champion who received bronze in Tokyo at 74 kilos (163 kilos). “You get again, quiet down for just a little bit, then you definitely’re proper into coaching once more. It feels good. I really feel hungry to get again on the market.
“I’m pleased with my medal (in Tokyo), however upset with the general efficiency. So to have an opportunity to go on the market and make it proper, I’m excited.”
On the Olympics, solely six weights are contested in all three types — males’s freestyle, girls’s freestyle, Greco-Roman. At non-Olympic world championships, 10 weights are contested.
The remainder of the U.S. groups have been determined on the world crew trials occasion in Lincoln, Neb., earlier this month. Every roster contains a mix of younger expertise, skilled veterans, and, within the case of males’s freestyle, some critical firepower.
Kyle Snyder, Thomas Gilman on crew in Oslo
Together with Taylor and Dake, Kyle Snyder received silver in Tokyo at 97-kg and Thomas Gilman received bronze at 57-kg. Becoming a member of them in Oslo are acquainted names:
- Jordan Burroughs, a five-time world and Olympic champ who’s now up at 79-kg;
- Nick Gwiazdkowski, a two-time world bronze medalist at 125-kg;
- J’den Cox, a two-time world champ and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist who missed weight on the 2020 Olympic Trials however is now at 92-kg;
- James Inexperienced, a two-time world silver medalist at 70-kg;
- Daton Repair, a two-time NCAA finalist from Oklahoma State who’s on his second Senior world crew at 61-kg;
- and Yianni Diakomihalis, a two-time NCAA champ from Cornell who will compete at his first-ever Senior-level world championship occasion at 65-kg.
“Yianni is basically clever,” stated Invoice Zadick, the U.S. males’s freestyle head coach. “He’s an ideal technician. He’s an ideal competitor. However what makes him distinctive is that he loves wrestling. I feel you see that in all of those guys. They love the on a regular basis course of.
“On paper, I feel we now have one of many best groups ever, however we nonetheless must go carry out … I feel these guys are going to be actually thrilling, actually enjoyable, and make us all proud.”
17-year-old Kylie Welker makes US crew
The ladies’s crew is led by Mensah-Inventory in addition to Adeline Grey, a five-time world champ who received silver in Tokyo; Helen Maroulis, America’s first two-time Olympic medalist in girls’s wrestling; and Sarah Hildebrandt, who received bronze in Tokyo.
Behind them is a mixture of youth and expertise:
- Amy Fearnside, a College world silver medalist again in 2014, at 53-kg;
- Jenna Burkert, who misplaced to Maroulis within the finals of the Olympic Trials, then beat Olympian and world champ Jacarra Winchester on the world crew trials at 55-kg;
- Maya Nelson, a Junior world champion, at 59-kg;
- Kayla Miracle, a Tokyo Olympian who reclaimed her world-team spot at 62-kg;
- Forrest Molinari, who’s twice reached the bronze-medal match on the 2018 and 2019 world championships, at 65-kg;
- and Kylie Welker, a 17-year-old Wisconsin native who misplaced to Grey within the Olympic Trials finals, received a Junior world title in August, and is now on the Senior world crew at 72-kg.
The U.S. Greco crew has solely received three complete medals since 2013 on the world and Olympic degree. Andy Bisek was a two-time bronze-medal winner in 2014 and 2015, and Adam Coon received silver in 2018.
“We’re going to go on the market and compete in each single match,” stated Matt Lindland, the U.S. Greco head coach. “We didn’t come residence with any (medals) on the Olympics, however I can’t fault these guys for not competing laborious.
“They went on the market, made makes an attempt, attacked. They have been wrestling among the finest guys on the planet, however we now have among the finest guys on the planet. I’m assured we’ll come again from Oslo with some medals.”
Cody Goodwin covers wrestling for the Des Moines Register. Comply with him on Twitter at @codygoodwin.
USA Wrestling’s 2021 World Groups
57-kg: Thomas Gilman
61-kg: Daton Repair
65-kg: Yianni Diakomihalis
70-kg: James Inexperienced
74-kg: Kyle Dake
79-kg: Jordan Burroughs
86-kg: David Taylor
92-kg: J’den Cox
97-kg: Kyle Snyder
125-kg: Nick Gwiazdowski
50-kg: Sarah Hildebrandt
53-kg: Amy Fearnside
55-kg: Jenna Burkert
57-kg: Helen Maroulis
59-kg: Maya Nelson
62-kg: Kayla Miracle
65-kg: Forrest Molinari
68-kg: Tamyra Mensah-Inventory
72-kg: Kylie Welker
76-kg: Adeline Grey
55-kg: Max Nowry
60-kg: Dalton Roberts
63-kg: Sam Jones
67-kg: Peyton Omania
72-kg: Pat Smith
77-kg: Jesse Porter
82-kg: Ben Provisor
87-kg: Alan Vera
97-kg: G’Angelo Hancock
130-kg: Cohlton Schultz