Now that the worlds are over and done....
It was a bit of a disappointing championships for me as a fan, honestly, and not because of the abysmal preformance of my fantasy team. Canada didn't qualify any men or win any women's weight classes and a lot of matchups I really wanted to see didn't happen. Nonetheless, there was a lot to like.
The Arm-Spin awards: this covers all categories, but I'm probably biased towards men's freestyle. Also, I haven't watched a lot of the matches.
OW: Jordan Burroughs, USA, 74 kg fs. Sharifov and Lebedev were top contenders in my mind, but in the end I'm picking the one who beat Tsargush and Goudrazi, two of the best p4p in the world, in very exciting matches. Burrough's combination of speed, set-ups and explosive power is something else to watch.
Golden Pylon Award: Shemarov, 120 kg fs. While Taghavi remains a perennial contender with his pathological fear of scoring more than once per period, this has to go to Shemarov who won four clinches in a row in the semis and finals to win the worlds.
Best Pound-for Pound: Besik Kudukhov, 60 kg fs. With Lopez, Gayzumov and Tsargush alll losing this is an easy choice. I think he may have to switch up his techniques a bit, guys were having some sucess stalling him out at this tournament. I don't know much about Abdelvi (66 kg Iran) but he won the worlds, world cup and Asian championships in a very brutal category and deserves recognition also.
Best Match: 60 kg greco finals. What a match, with a crazy 3rd period! The Iranian gets put on his back (I thought he was pinned, personally), comes back with some huge throws, and then throws himself just to keep things exciting! The Tsargush/Burroughs match is a strong contender for this category also. I'm going to post all my favorites in a bit.
Best Non-Champion: Ali Bernard, 3rd at 72 kg womens. She wrestled 4 world medallists and beat 3 of them- by fall! Great preformance. Very well deserved medal after knocking on the door for a few ears.
Most annoying controversy: As always, there are many, from the inherent difficulties in scoring international wrestling to the neverending allegations of corruptions Did Lopez lose on purpose? (I say yes.) Why do the referees hate Belagliev (66 kg greco) so much? However, the most infuriating as a Canadian is the 55 kg final. Tonya Verbeek had a chance to finally beat Yoshida, and was hit with a really questionable "fleeing" call. Coach Calder posted on the Canadian forum about this and he was furious.