Host City: Athina, Greece
Venue(s): Ano Liosia Olympic Hall, Ano Liossia
Date Started: August 24, 2004
Date Finished: August 25, 2004
Format: Round-robin pools, winner of each pool advanced to single-elimination tournament.
Turkey’s Hamza Yerlikaya had won the gold medal in this class at Atlanta in 1996 and at Sydney in 2000. He was the 2001-02 European Champion but had not won a medal at the World Championships since 1997, and was no longer the clear favorite in this event, which was considered fairly open. The slight favorite was likely Swedish-Armenian Ara Abrahamian, the 2001-02 World Champion and runner-up in 2003. The 2003 World Champion was Israeli Gotcha Tsitsiashvili, who had immigrated from Georgia in 1994, but he lost in pool four to Russia’s [Aleksey Mishin], the 2001 and 2003 European Champion. Mishin made it to the finals, where he met Abrahamian, who had defeated Yerlikaya in the semi-finals. Mishin and Abrahamian went to overtime and wrestled for nine minutes and remained tied, 1-1, with Mishin winning the gold medal on officials’ decision.
In 2008 Abrahamian would enter as a favorite but underperformed and placed third. Irate with that finish, he dropped the medal in the center of the mat during the victory ceremony. For this, he was disqualified and stripped of his medal and suspended for two years, although the suspension was later overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
|11||Brad Vering||26||United States||USA||4||0|
|AC||Mohamed Abd El-Fatah||26||Egypt||EGY||DQ|