Yasemin Adar of Turkey will be gunning for her fifth consecutive European Wrestling Championships gold as she takes on Russia’s Ekatarina Bukina in women’s 76kg final in Rome tonight.
Rio Olympics bronze medallist Ekatarina will be eyeing her maiden European Championships gold, but the dice on class and form is heavily loaded in the Turkish ladies’ favour.
Ekatarina has had an impressive run-up to the final. She had wiped out Svetlana Saenko of Ukraine in the qualification round with a 10-0 technical superiority verdict. Thereafter her sail to the finals was smooth as she defeated Iselin Maria Moen Solheim of Norway, Sabira Aliyeva of Azerbaijan and Vasilisa Marzaliuk of Belarus without much sweat.
Ekatarina’s European Championships roll of honour includes a silver and a bronze in 2010 and 2014 respectively. She has also bagged a silver at the 2011 Instanbul World Championships and a bronze in the previous edition in Moscow. But there is no major success to her name after the Rio Games bronze four years earlier.
The Turkish wrestler on the other hand will be gunning for her fifth consecutive European Championship gold. She has made it a habit since 2016 to return with the gold from the European Championships. In between she has also won the 2017 World Championships gold in Paris.
Yasemin though had to overcome the challenge of German heavyweight Aline Rotter Focken for a hard fought 5-4 scoreline. She then trounced Kamila Czeslawa Kulwicka of Poland by fall and then cruised to a 10-0 semi-finals win over France’s Pauline Lecarpentier.
All eyes in the Rome arena tonight are going to be on the women’s 76kg final.