One of the Soviet Union's World War Two heroes, Sultan Baimagastamov, has been honoured with an international Greco-Roman wrestling match held especially in his memory.
One of the Soviet Union's World War Two heroes, Sultan Baimagastamov, has been honoured with an international Greco-Roman wrestling match held especially in his memory. Twenty-seven wrestlers from Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Rumania, Sweden and the Soviet Union itself took part in the match on Sunday (26 June) in Alma-Ata, capital of Kazakhstan in the USSR.
SYNOPSIS: Home champion Peter Tishenko, wearing a knee support, showed the classical difference between Greco-Roman wrestling and the better-known freestyle in his bout with 1976 European champion Ferenz Anderson of Sweden. In Greco-Roman, the older of the two styles, wrestlers are not confined within ropes but in a marked-out circle on the mat. The major difference to freestyle is that the fighters are not allowed to hit out; seize their opponents below the hips, or grip with their legs. But something went wrong in this medium-weight bout -- with Anderson receiving a blow in the mouth which required medical attention before the bout was allowed to resume.
But despite the injury, Anderson recovered well enough to go on to an outright victory over Tishenko. In the medium-heavyweight bout two local competitors were featured - Igor Lavrov, in the blue strip and white shoes, fought Vitaly Mizgaitis in the red. It was perhaps a significant match in the annals of Greco-Roman wrestling, in the Soviet Union for the best fighters in the style traditionally come from Kazakhstan. One wrestler from that state took the gold medal in the Montreal Olympics and others have won previous Olympics, and in world and European championships.
Lavrov and Mizgaitis showed another difference with the style. When a bout is interrupted, one of the wrestlers can be granted an advantage on its resumption.
The international panel of judges finally awarded the bout to 22-year-old Mizgaitis after he successfully pinned Lavrov to the ground with a traditional shoulder-hold -- move closely similar to freestyle wrestling.