U.S. draws Japan, Georgia, Iran at Freestyle World Cup in Iowa City, April 7-8

By Richard Immel, USA Wrestling | Feb. 13, 2018, 5:13 p.m. (ET)
Photo: Two-time World medalist James Green pictured at the 2017 World Championships in Paris, France. Photo by Tony Rotundo, WrestlersAreWarriors.com.

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- United World Wrestling has announced the pool pairings for the 2018 Freestyle World Cup hosted by the University of Iowa at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on April 7-8.

The United States competes in Pool A against the nations of Japan, Georgia, and Iran. Pool B consists of teams from Russia, Azerbaijan, Cuba, and Kazakhstan.

"It is a great draw," said U.S. National Freestyle Coach Bill Zadick. "Last year, we were drawn into the 'Pool of Death,' and our guys rose to the occasion. This year, we have a strong pool with Iran, Georgia and Japan. We are going to have to fight to get out of our pool. Our guys are coming into it with that attitude."

The United States and Russia, the top two countries at the 2017 World Championships in Paris, France, were separated into opposite pools prior to the draw.

WATCH TEAM USA
The U.S. opens its tournament against Japan on Saturday at 10 a.m. (CT). Defending World Cup champion Iran will meet the U.S. in a rematch of last year's World Cup final on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Team USA's final pool-play contest against Georgia is slated for Sunday at 10 a.m. The medal rounds will be determined after pool-play results are finalized.

WORLD CUP FORMAT
The two-day tournament is broken down into three pool-play sessions, in addition to a medal round. Every team will compete during each session. The event schedule is as follows:

Saturday, April 7
10 a.m. - Session I
2 p.m. - Opening Ceremonies
2:30 p.m. - Session II

Sunday, April 8
10 a.m. - Session III
12:30 p.m. - 7th Place Match, 5th Place Match
2:15 p.m. - Bronze Medal Match
4 p.m. - Gold Medal Match

EXPERIENCE THE WORLD CUP
Ticket opportunities for the World Cup include a Gold all-session package ($225), a Black all-session package ($150), and standard all-session tickets ($75/$50). Tickets are now available on the University of Iowa Athletics website.

Visit worldcupiowacity.com for more information on the event.