World Championships preview in men's freestyle at 96 kg/211.5 lbs

Sept. 07, 2013, 7:19 a.m. (ET)
Date of competition: Monday, Sept. 16

American Jake Varner realized a lifelong dream when he captured a gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games at 96 kg/211.5 lbs.

Varner was expected to make a run at a World title this season, but he has not competed since placing second at the Dan Kolov International early this year. Varner won a bronze medal at the 2011 Worlds.

The World Championships are set for Sept. 16-22 in Budapest, Hungary.

Russia's Abdusalam Gadisov is ranked No. 1 in the World after winning the World University Games, but Gadisov lost to Anzor Boltukaev in the finals of the Russian Nationals this year.

Ukraine's Pavlo Oleynik is ranked second after collecting a silver medal at the World University Games. 2012 Olympic silver medalist Valeri Andriitsev of Ukraine sits at No. 4 in the World rankings.

2012 Olympic bronze medalist Khetag Gazyumov of Azerbaijan continues to be a force in this division. He is ranked fifth in the World. He won the Grand Prix of Spain this year.

Gazyumov's Azerbaijan teammate, 2012 Olympic gold medalist and 2011 World champion Sharif Sharifov, is ranked eighth in the World after bumping up a weight class this year. Sharifov finished third at the Grand Prix of Spain this year.

Georgia's Elizhbar Odikadze is ranked sixth. He won the Yasar Dogu International this year.

American J.D. Bergman has made his second World Team. He placed third in the Ziolkowski International in Poland this summer.

Bergman has been hampered by injuries the past couple of years since finishing 10th at the 2010 Worlds.

Bergman is an experienced and dangerous wrestler who can contend for a medal at the Worlds.

96 kg/211.5 lbs. - 1. Abdusalam Gadisov (Russia); 2. Pavlo Oleynik (Ukraine); 3. Khadshimourad Gatsalov (Russia); 4. Valeri Andriitsev (Ukraine); 5. Khetag Gazyumov (Azerbaijan); 6. Elizhbar Odikadze (Georgia); 7. Kenan Gor (Turkey); 8. Sharif Sharifov (Azerbaijan); 9. William Harth (Germany); 10. Khuderbulga Dorkkhand (Mongolia); 11. Ivan Yankouski (Belarus); 12. Alikhan Dzhumaev (Kazakhstan); 13. Yuri Maier (Argentina); 14. Nicolae Ceban (Moldova); 15. Riza Yildirim (Turkey)


2012 Olympic Games
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Jake Varner (USA); Silver - Valeri Andriitsev (Ukraine); Bronze - George Gogeshelidze (Georgia); Bronze - Khetag Gazyumov (Azerbaijan); 5th - Kurban Kurbanov (Kazakhstan); 5th - Reza Yazdani (Iran); 7th - Magomed Musaev (Kyrgyzstan); 8th - Rustam Isokawa (Japan); 9th - Abdusalam Gadisov (Russia); 10th - Khetag Pliev (Canada)

2011 World Championships
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Reza Yazdani (Iran); Silver - Serhat Balci (Turkey); Bronze - Ruslan Sheikhau (Belarus); Bronze - Jake Varner (USA); 5th - Sinivie Boltic (Nigeria); 5th - Taimuraz Tigiyev (Kazakhstan); 7th - Rustam Iskandari (Tajikistan); 8th - Gergely Sandor Kiss (Hungary); 9th - Jozef Jaloviar (Slovakia); 10th - Kurban Kurbanov (Uzbekistan)

2010 World Championships
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Khetag Gazyumov (Azerbaijan); Silver - Khadshimourad Gatsalov (Russia); Bronze - Alexey Krupnyakov (Kyrgyzstan); Bronze - George Gogshelidze (Georgia); 5th - Ruslan Sheikhau (Belarus); 5th - Arfan Amiri (Iran); 7th - Khetag Pliev (Canada); 8th - Michel Batista (Cuba); 9th - Serhat Balci (Turkey); 10th - J.D. Bergman (USA)

2009 World Championships
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Khadshimourad Gatsalov (Russia); Silver - Khetag Gazyumov (Azerbaijan); Bronze - Serhat Balci (Turkey); Bronze - George Gogchelidze (Georgia); 5th - Ruslan Sheikhau (Belarus); 5th - Saeed Abrahimi (Iran); 7th - Oldrick Wagner (Germany); 8th - Saleh Moustafa Emara (Egypt); 9th - Jake Varner (USA); 10th - Edgar Yenokyan (Armenia)

2008 Olympic Games
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Shirvani Muradov (Russia); Silver - Taimuraz Tigiyev (Kazakhstan); Bronze - George Gogschelidze (Georgia); Bronze - Khetag Gazyumov (Azerbaijan); 5th - Michel Batista (Cuba); 5th - Georgii Tibilov (Ukraine); 7th - Kurban Kurbanov (Uzbekistan); 8th - Gergely Kiss (Hungary); 9th -Hakan Koc (Turkey); 10th - Saeid Abrahimi (Iran)

2007 World Championships
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Khadshimourad Gatsalov (Russia); Silver - Saeed Abrahimi (Iran); Bronze - Kurban Kurbanov (Uzbekistan); Bronze - Daniel Cormier (United States); 5th - Hakan Koc (Turkey); 5th - Alexej Krupniakov (Kyrgyzstan); 7th - Vasili Tismenetzki (Ukraine); 8th - Stefan Kehrer (Germany); 9th - Khetag Gazumov (Azerbaijan); 10th - Georgi Gogchelidze (Georgia)

2006 World Championships
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Khadshimourad Gatsalov (Russia); Silver - George Gogsehelidze (Georgia); Bronze - Michel Batista (Cuba); Bronze - Ruslan Sheyikhov (Belarus); 5th - David Zilberman (Canada); 5th - Ali Reza Heidari (Iran); 7th - Aleksei Kruphyakov (Kirghizistan); 8th - Vasil Tesmynetskyy (Ukraine); 9th - Stepan Kehrer (Germany); 10th - Patal Rohit (India)

2005 World Championships
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Khadshimourad Gatsalov (Russia); Silver - Luka Kurtanidze (Georgia); Bronze - Aleksei Krupnykov (Krygyzstan); Bronze - Vasyl Tesmeyneckyy (Ukraine); 5th - Tae-Hyun Koo (Korea); 5th - Siarhei Pernikau (Belarus); 7th - Amir Ganji (Iran); 8th - Bartolomie Bartnicki (Poland); 9th - Nurzhan Katayev (Kazakhstan); 10th - Gergely Kiss (Hungary)

2004 Olympic Games
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Gold - Khajimurad Gatsalov (Russia); Silver - Magomed Ibragimov (Uzbekistan); Bronze -Ali Reza Heidari (Iran); 4th - Daniel Cormier (USA); 5th -Rustem Aghayev (Azerbaijan); 6th -Wan Yuanyan (China); 7th - Aleksandr Shemarov (Belarus); 8th - Eldar Kurtanidze (Georgia); 9th - Fatih Cakiroglu (Turkey); 10th - Islam Bairamukov (Kazakhstan)