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Journeymen World Classic will be a great international event, April 9-10 in Troy, N.Y., with spots still available for boys and girls

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

As promised, the 2022 Journeymen World Classic, set for Troy, N.Y., April 9-10, is shaping up as a great international competition for Junior and Cadet boys and girls wrestlers in freestyle.

This unique event, which uses a round-robin format, features many top U.S. athletes and numerous foreign competitors. The girls division is still open to many more motivated athletes. The boys competition has some spots available to a limited number of talented wrestlers who wish to challenge themselves.

The competition will be held at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy, N.Y., a suburb of Albany, the capitol of New York State.

At this time, the boys competition includes over 200 U.S. boys and 75 international boys, who can wrestle in an individual tournament and a dual meet event. International competitors from the following nations are ready to battle against American boys: Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bolivia, Canada, Finland, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, New Zealand, Panama, Peru and Uzbekistan.

For the U.S. boys and the foreign boys, there is a variety of talent levels, from World and Continental medalists as well as those with fewer achievements and less experience.

Some of the nation’s top clubs are sending boys to wrestle in this event: Pinnacle (MN), Young Guns (PA), Askren Wrestling Academy (WI), Monster Garage (CA), Doughboy (New England), Izzy Style (IL) and many more. Teams from Prep school powerhouses Wyoming Seminary (PA) and Blair Academy (NJ) are entered. A Team New Jersey (formed from a number of top clubs) will participate. Host Journeymen WC is also well represented.

There are over 100 girls who have already signed up, the first year that a girls individual tournament is a part of the Journeymen World Classic. In addition to numerous talented wrestlers from both the United States and Canada, other nations represented in the girls event include Austria, Hungary, Kyrgyzstan, Norway, Switzerland and New Zealand.

Wrestlers rarely get an opportunity to compete against international competitors, and all of these foreign athletes are coming here to the USA to compete against you. This event will get you ready for the major national tournaments the rest of the spring and summer, especially for those who intend to try out for a U.S. age-group World Team or come home with hardware from Fargo.

In a difficult time for international travel due to international conflict and the ongoing pandemic, large delegations from Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan were able to get visas to compete. In fact, the Kyrgyzstan has a delegation of 28 people, including a full girls team to go with its boys team.

Event organizer Frank Popolizio wishes to thank U.S. Congressman Markwayne Mullin of Oklahoma, the chair of the Congressional Wrestling Caucus, for his hard work in helping the international teams receive access to the USA to compete. Popolizio also praised the cultural affairs office of the U.S. Department of State for their efforts on behalf of the event.

Saturday, April 9 is the individual tournament for boys. Sunday, April 10 is the individual tournament for girls, as well as the dual meet tournament for boys.

Normally, a U.S. athlete has to purchase a UWW license for international competition, which costs $100 or more. However, United World Wrestling has waived the UWW license fee for U.S. wrestlers to compete in this event. All you need is a current USA Wrestling membership and pay the entry fee, and you can test yourself against top U.S. athletes as well as talented international opponents.

Still interested in competing? Check out these fliers for more information.



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