Turkish wrestlers win gold in European championship

Turkish wrestlers win gold in European championship

KASPIYSK – Anadolu Agency
Turkish wrestlers win gold in European championship

Turkish wrestler Soner Demirtaş won the gold medal in the European Wrestling Championship after beating his French counterpart Zelimkhan Khadjiev in the Russian city of Kaspiysk on May 6.

Demirtaş became a gold medalist for the third time in a row when he beat Khadjiev 2-0 in the men’s freestyle 70-kilogram category.

Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Demirtaş said he wanted to dedicate the medal to his family.

“Because my father had a dream when I started wrestling. He wanted to see [me as] a champion,” said Demirtaş.

Later, another Turkish athlete, Taha Akgül, also won a gold medal in the same tournament.

Akgül clinched the victory beating his Georgian competitor Geno Petriashvili in the men’s freestyle 125-kilogram category in the final match of the tournament.

He led the game 1-0 in the first set of the game in the Ali Aliyev Sport Complex and won the competition 2-1.

With the May 6 victory, the national wrestler of Turkey repeated his record in the European championship for the sixth time.

Akgül said that the victory was a revenge against his Georgian rival to whom he had lost the World Cup last year.

“I had lost the World Championship to the same athlete in a dramatic way. I had to win in the return match. I had promised to my country, to the nation, to our coaches, especially to our president [Recep Tayyip Erdoğan]. He was also very upset,” he said.

The national athlete said he was dedicating the gold medal to the family of the troops killed in “Operation Olive Branch” in Syria’s Afrin district and the veterans.

The Turkish team’s coach, Abdullah Çakmar, congratulated Akgül for his gold medal and said: “We got the gold medal that we had left in France,” referring to last year’s world cup tournament.

“We dedicate our medals as present to you and the president,” he added.