World Wrestling Championship – Jordan Burrough Wins: The tiger-like leap forward. The vice-like grip behind the knees. The head to the chest. The opponent tumbling helplessly backwards. With the same classic takedown that has kept him at the pinnacle of the sport for a decade, Jordan BURROUGHS (USA) added to his self-proclaimed legend by capturing a fifth world title and first in the freestyle 79kg division. India’s Pinki meanwhile will fight for Bronze Medal on Tuesday.
World Wrestling Championship – Jordan Burrough Wins: Burroughs scored twice with his trademark double-leg takedown in the second period to outclass world junior champion Mohammad NOKHODILARIMI (IRI) 5-1 in one of the four finals on tap Monday night at the World Championships in Oslo.
“I’ve been waiting a long time to get back here,” Burroughs said. “It’s been four years since I won a world championship. It’s been so much that I’ve gone through this last year. It’s been a really difficult year for me.”
Tokyo Olympic bronze medalist Thomas GILMAN (USA) also gave the U.S. a gold with a victory at 57kg, as Iran came away with only one title on the night despite having a presence in all four finals.
The Russian federation and Iran split the other two golds at stake, with European champion Zagir SHAKHIEV (RWF) capturing the 65kg gold and Kamran GHASEMPOUR (IRI) coming through at 92kg to give Iran its third gold overall of the tournament at Jordal Amfi arena.
Jordan BURROUGHS (USA) won the 79kg title after beating Mohammad NOKHODILARIMI (IRI) 5-1 in the final. (Photo: UWW / Tony Rotundo)
World Wrestling Championship – Jordan Burrough Wins: Burroughs, by adding to the world titles he won in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017 (all at 74kg), is now the first American male to become a five-time world champion. Combined with his Olympic gold in 2012, he tied John Smith for the U.S. record of six world and Olympic crowns.
“I knew that this was going to be a big moment for me, and it was only six minutes of wrestling to solidify myself in history,” Burroughs said. “I just wanted to be in the moment. My coaches told me to be thankful, show heart and gratitude, let the light inside you shine brighter than the lights on you.”
The 33-year-old Burroughs revealed that he suffered a severe calf injury at the U.S. team trials three weeks ago that nearly derailed his trip to Oslo. He also had to deal with mental strain of his wife having fourth child two days before his departure. That was on top of missing out on the Tokyo Olympics when he was beaten for the 74kg spot by Kyle DAKE (USA).
“I was able to persevere through strong faith and a great encouraging team around me,” he said. “I’m just super-blessed to be in this position. I really don’t take any of this for granted….Even if I never wrestle another match in my life, I feel like I’m certified, I’m a legend in this sport and no one can take that away from me.”
Burroughs joked that the epic story of how he won the 2013 world title despite a severe ankle injury might have cost him credibility had he pulled out of Oslo.
“Nobody listens to me now,” he said with a smile. “They’re like, you did it in 2013, you can do it again.”
Burroughs said that making the victory sweeter was the fact that he faced an Iranian in the final, as he and that country share a long-held mutual respect.
“I knew coming into this match-up tonight that it was really cool that I get to wrestle an Iranian in the final, since I hadn’t done that since 2013,” said Burroughs, who also joked about facing such a younger opponent. “He was junior world champion, but that’s all they had to tell me, that he was junior world champion, in 2021! I’m like, nope, I can’t lose to this guy.”
Still, Burroughs knows never to underestimate anyone, so he did his homework and found the chink in Nokholdilarimi’s armor. From earlier matches, Burroughs saw how the Iranian liked to square up and work for an underhook, which he countered by circling and deflecting the arm.
Nokholdilarimi never launched an attack, and in the first period, Burroughs scored the only point off the activity clock. In the second period, it was Classic Burroughs and his driving takedown.
“If you leave your legs in a square position, half of the work is done for me,” Burroughs said. “I don’t have to have a set-up. Now all I have to do is just lower my stance and shoot a hard one. Fortunately, I was able to get my hands behind his knees and get through him a few times.”
So will Burroughs head off into the sunset in triumph? Not on your life, he says. He’s not only going to continue, but has aims of eventually dropping back down to 74kg and making it to the 2024 Paris Olympics.
“I’m sore. I’m getting old, man. I feel it, but I also feel good,” he said. “I feel strong at this weight class and I’m going to stay here at 79 kilos for the foreseeable future, then work my way back down to 74 for the Olympic Games in Paris in 2024.
“I’m not done. I still feel like I have a lot to give.”
Day 3 Results
57kg (22 entries)
GOLD: Thomas GILMAN (USA) df. Alireza SARLAK (IRI), 5-3
BRONZE: Horst LEHR (GER) df. Abubakar MUTALIEV (RWF), 6-4
BRONZE: Aryan TSIUTRYN (BLR) df. Suleyman ATLI (TUR), 3-1
65kg (27 entries)
GOLD: Zagir SHAKHIEV (RWF) df. Amir YAZDANI (IRI) by TF, 14-4, 1:25
BRONZE: Alibek OSMONOV (KGZ) df. Krzysztof BIENKOWSKI (POL), 4-1
BRONZE: Tulga TUMUR OCHIR (MGL) df. Rohit ROHIT (IND) by Fall, 5:47 (10-4)
70kg (26 entries)
Semifinal: Ernazar AKMATALIEV (KGZ) df. Evgenii ZHERBAEV (RWF), 9-5
Semifinal: Magomedmurad GADZHIEV (POL) df. Turan BAYRAMOV (AZE), 4-2
79kg (25 entries)
GOLD: Jordan BURROUGHS (USA) df. Mohammad NOKHODILARIMI (IRI), 5-1
BRONZE: Radik VALIEV (RWF) df. Ryuki YOSHIDA (JPN) by TF, 10-0, 2:25
BRONZE: Nika KENTCHADZE (GEO) df. Arman AVAGYAN (ARM) by TF, 10-0, 2:07
92kg (20 entries)
GOLD: Kamran GHASEMPOUR (IRI) df. Magomed KURBANOV (RWF), 8-4
BRONZE: Osman NURMAGODMEDOV (AZE) df. Amarhajy MAHAMEDAU (BLR), 2-0
BRONZE: J’den COX (USA) df. Andriy VLASOV (UKR) by TF, 11-0, 5:20
97kg (22 entries)
Semifinal: Abdulrashid SADULAEV (RWF) df. Mahamed ZAKARIIEV (UKR) by TF, 11-0, 5:29
Semifinal: Kyle SNYDER (USA) df. Mojtaba GOLEIJ (IRI), 3-2
55kg (14 entries)
Semifinal: Tsugumi SAKURAI (JPN) df. Olga KHOROSHAVTSEVA (RWF), 6-2
Semifinal: Nina HEMMER (GER) df. Pinki PINKI (IND), 8-6
62kg (17 entries)
Semifinal: Aisuluu TYNYBEKOVA (KGZ) df. Ilona PROKOPEVNIUK (UKR), 5-2
Semifinal: Kayla MIRACLE (USA) df. Lais NUNES DE OLIVEIRA (BRA), 2-0