In the middle of May, 10 Scottish wrestlers accompanied by National Coach, Volodymyr Gladkov and Performance Manager, John Keogh took part in a training camp in Rome in preparation for their first international tournament of the year in Sardinia, in the City of Sassari Cup on the 28th May. The camp went well and also included athletes from hosts Italy, Romania, Moldova and Canada, before travelling on to Sardinia.
This was a great tournament for the Scottish wrestlers to compete in with some of the best wrestling federations in attendance, including Russia, Canada, Latvia, Romania, Moldova, Poland, Germany, France, Spain and Italy. Other nations included Israel, Senegal, Slovakia, Iraq, Switzerland and all the UK home countries.
Of the 10 Scottish athletes in attendance, eight competed with two being withdrawn from the tournament due to illness. By the end of the tournament, Scottish wrestlers had acquitted themselves very well with a total of six bronze medals, four from the women two from the men. The other two athletes finished in 5th and 7th place respectively.
Commenting John Keogh said: “This was a very good performance by our athletes, which also saw the team collect a trophy for finishing fifth in the overall team ranking, with only Romania, Spain, Italy and Russia finished ahead of the Scottish team.
“This was a significant achievement considering the level and quality of the competition with over 20 countries competing, and is testament to the athlete’s continuing improvement under the National Coach Volodymyr Gladkov.”
The trip also created a great opportunity for Scottish Wrestling to continue to strengthen links with other nations including Italy, Canada, Romania and Moldova who have asked us to consider holding an international training camp in Scotland and have also invited us to camps in their respective countries. This will all be excellent preparation for the next Commonwealth Games in Glasgow 2014.