Former world champion wrestler Hitomi Sakamoto beat Athens Olympic silver medalist Chiharu Icho in a playoff Thursday to earn a place in the world wrestling championships.

Sakamoto edged Icho 2-1 in the women’s 51-kg playoff at Yoyogi national gymnasium annex to join her younger sister Makiko on the Japanese team for the world championships to be held in Budapest on Sept. 26-Oct. 2.

Makiko Sakamoto has qualified for the worlds at 48 kg.

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