Five U.S. Greco-Roman wrestlers have repechage hopes entering U20 World semifinals

by Richard Immel, USA Wrestling

Zachary Silvis works for a takedown in his first bout at 55 kg at the U20 World Championships (Photo by Richard Immel - USA Wrestling)

AMMAN, JORDAN – A promising start for the U.S. Greco-Roman team saw four-of-five athletes advance to the quarterfinals at the U20 World Championships. The American momentum came to an abrupt halt as all four took a loss at the end of the Friday morning session.

On a positive note, all five group one Americans still have solid hopes to qualify for repechage pending tonight’s semifinal results at Princess Sumaya Lounge in Amman’s Sports City.

Returning U20 World bronze medalist Aden Attao and U20 Pan-American champion Wyatt Voelker both posted 2-1 records on the day. Going 1-1 in the opening session were Minnesota standout Zachary Silvis and U20 Pan-American champion Landon Drury. All four qualified for the vexing quarterfinal round in Amman.

The Idaho product Attao played things close to the vest in his first two matches and it came back around in his 130 kg quarterfinal against Achilleas Chrysidis of Greece, who was fifth place at the U20 European Championships.

After starting off strong with a pair of takedowns, it appeared Attao had things under control. However, he hit a wall in the second period, giving up three step outs plus two fleeing calls. The 6-4 defeat puts Attao’s back-to-back medal hopes in jeopardy. He needs Chrysidis to take out Asian silver medalist Wenhao Jiang of China in the semifinals to be pulled into repechage.

Northern Iowa freshman Voelker gave up a four-point arm throw in the opening moments of his 87 kg semifinal against returning silver medalist Abolfazl Choubani of Iran and couldn’t recover. Volker was able to match the Iranian’s physicality, so much so he drew the ire of the officiating crew on multiple occasions. In the end, he couldn’t convert from neutral and wasn’t awarded a chance on top, falling, 7-2.

Fresh off a Junior Nationals title in Fargo, N.D., Drury looked strong the bulk of the day. One critical error ended up costing him in the 63 kg quarterfinals. After throwing Kyrgyzstan’s U17 Asian champion Zhantoro Mirzaliev for four with a nice straight lift, Drury was countered, and instead of dropping flat to his stomach, he fought hands from standing and was tossed for four. He didn’t get another chance on top and dropped the match, 8-5.

Silvis bagged a great win over Individual Neutral Athlete Dzianis Vitaroi, getting a pin at the 5:57 mark of his opener. He displayed great body awareness and counter-offense in the match. Up next was last year’s U17 World champion Ali Ahmadi Vafa of Iran, who proved to be a buzzsaw. Silvis gave up the first passivity and was sent for four points twice in the first period, ending the match.

Northern Colorado’s Derek Matthews dropped his only match of the day, 8-1, at 77 kg but put forth a strong effort against returning silver medalist and U20 European champion Alexandru Solovei of Moldova. Down 3-1 in the second period, Matthews had a chance on top to tie the match with a turn but was countered and gave up a four-point lift in the sequence.

The U20 World Championships continue at 4:45 p.m. local time with the first set of Greco-Roman semifinals followed by the women’s freestyle group two medal matches. Amman, Jordan, is in the GMT +3 time zone, which is seven hours ahead of U.S. Eastern Time.

Those in the U.S. can watch all the action live on Brackets and updated results will be provided by United World Wrestling on and the UWW mobile app.

2023 U20 World Championships

At Amman, Jordan, August 14-20

U.S. Greco-Roman Group One (55-63-77-87-130 kg) Results

55 kg – Zachary Silvis (Cottage Grove, Minnesota/Pinnacle WC)

WIN Dzianis Vitaroi (Individual Neutral Athlete), fall, 5:57

LOSS Ali Ahmadi Vafa (Iran), tech. fall, 11-0

63 kg – Landon Drury (Colorado Springs, Colorado/Betterman Elite Wrestling)

WIN Suhib Alhasanat (Jordan), tech. fall, 9-0

LOSS Zhantoro Mirzaliev (Kyrgyzstan), 8-5

77 kg – Derek Matthews (Burley, Idaho/Northern Colorado WC)

LOSS Alexandru Solovei (Moldova), 8-1

87 kg – Wyatt Voelker (Manchester, Iowa/Panther Wrestling Club RTC)

WIN Yhlas Abdurazakov (Turkmenistan), tech. fall, 10-0

WIN Mohit Khokhar (India), 6-3

LOSS Abolfazl Choubani (Iran), 7-2

130 kg – Aden Attao (Boise, Idaho/Suples WC)

WIN Ayumu Iwasawa (Japan), 3-1

WIN Koppany Laszlo (Hungary), 8-7

LOSS Achilleas Chrysidis (Greece), 6-4

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