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Japan women wrestlers bag three golds, one silver at world championships

Kyodo

Japan’s Sara Dosho, Yui Susaki and Risako Kawai won gold in the women’s divisions at the world wrestling championships, while Mayu Mukaida settled for silver on Thursday.

Dosho defeated Aline Focken of Germany in the 69-g weight class. Susaki and Kawai beat Emilia Aline Vuc of Romania and Allison Mackenzie Ragan of the United States in the 48 kg and 60 kg divisions, respectively. Mukaida lost to Vanesa Kaladzinskaya of Belarus at 53 kg.

Dosho, the Rio Olympic champion, suffered a left shoulder injury prior to the worlds and has been able to compete with the help of pain killers.

The 18-year-old Susaki, making her worlds debut, blew out her early opponents, awarded victory in her first three bouts by technical fall. Susaki, who won her first Asian championship this year, overcame a tenacious defense by North Korea’s Kim Son Hyang to win their semifinal 5-2.

The Rio Olympic gold medalist at 63 kg, the 22-year-old Kawai previously won a worlds silver medal in 2015. She notched solid wins in the quarterfinals and semis.

Mukaida won the world championship last year in the non-Olympic 55-kg weight class.

Meanwhile, the sport’s ruling body, United World Wrestling, has eliminated the four weight classes in which Japanese women won gold medals at last year’s Rio Olympics. The new classes will be 50, 53, 57, 62, 68 and 76 kg.

Japan’s Rio medals came in 48, 58, 63 and 69 kg.