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|Draws and quotes from U.S. wrestlers Sammie Henson, Mike Zadick and Dremiel Byers and their coaches after weighin at World Championships|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
55 kg freestyle - Sammie Henson, Flintstone, Ga. (Sunkist Kids)
Will face Rene Montero of Cuba in the first round
"I am ready to wrestle. It's finally here. I always go out to be my best. Last year, things didn't go my way. But I always go to be the best. I never wrestle except to win. I am the best wrestler in the world. If I lay it on the line, I'll win. I am here to compete. I want to be like Joe Warren was yesterday. I want to lay it on the line and win."
60 kg/132 lbs. - Mike Zadick, Solon, Iowa (Hawkeye WC)
Will face Saeed Azarbayjani of Canada in first round
"I feel real good. I feel I am stronger than everybody. I felt big in line at the weigh-ins. It is a sign of confidence. This is a tough weight, with two Olympic champions and a few World champions. I'll go in confident. I know I am in better condition than anybody. It doesn't matter who I face, I will throw it at them. My conditioning and my strength are my best assets. It will allow me to win. I tell myself that and I believe it."
"I have never really been nervous, until I got here and I got nervous one night. I am not anymore. The only thing I can do is go out there and be confident. I'll go out and lay it on the line and have fun doing it. I want to get out there, mix it up, and use all the moves that I have. I want to really get after it. The only thing I can say is, hell yeah, I'll throw it out there. If I do that every match, I won't get beat."
120 kg Greco-Roman - Dremiel Byers, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army)
Will face Vladimir Guralski of Israel in first round
"I just have got to wrestle like I've been training. Keep it intense. Keep attacking the body. I'm only going to do what I am good at. I'm really confident in what I can get done. The scouting was real good this time around. Winning would be great. I know everyone is here. I want to shine again."
U.S. Freestyle World Team Coach Mike Duroe
(about Mike Zadick)
"This is the toughest tournament in the world. There are advantages and disadvantages in being here for the first time. The advantage is he is hungry and excited for his opportunity. He realizes he needs to make the most of his opportunity to win a World title. Anytime you come to a new event, there is some unfamiliarity that causes stress. I think the preparation is very good. For the whole team, we tried to get them ready for what to expect. We had coaches like Kevin Jackson, Terry Brands, Lee Kemp, all multiple World champions, and it has been easy as coaches to get them in the right frame of mind for this competition."
"Mike's preparation has been good. He's had some bumps and bruises as you would expect from any training camp. When you come to this competition, it doesn't matter. You go with what you are dealt. He is a tough kid. I feel good about his chances. He has worked hard on the technical areas where he is flawed. He has improved tremendously since the beginning of training this summer. He is a better wrestler technically."
U.S. Freestyle World Team Coach Lou Rosselli
(about Sammie Henson)
"Sammie is doing real well. He is wrestling great. His areas of concentration is good. From what I understand, he is ready. He has been wrestling good. But it comes down to the same thing. If your preparation is great, you still have to perform. If he wrestles to his ability, he will do extremely well and he will win. He knows how to win. It goes to preparation and his mental state of mind. He has wrestled all the competitors here. All he has to do now is go out there and win."
U.S. Greco-Roman coach Shon Lewis
(about Dremiel Byers, who he coaches with the U.S. Army)
"He has been working hard. We went over some things. He has improved in many areas. He is in shape. I expect him to do good. He is prepared and expects to win. I expect the same. We will take them one period and one match at a time. Focus is a key. Once you have been there and accomplished (winning a World title), it is now a mental game. It is re-dedication. He has re-focused himself on wrestling well and doing well to win. We talk about it all the time. 2002 is a long time ago. He won't sneak up on anybody. He is a World champion. It is a journey."