Winchester loses semifinal as winning takedown overturned, and will go for bronze on Tuesday

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Oct. 22, 2018, 12:38 p.m. (ET)
Jacarra Winchester of the USA secures a double leg as time ran down in her 55 kg semifinals against Zalina Sidakova of Belarus. Her takedown was overturned by a protest. Photo by Robbert Wijtman.

BUDAPEST, Hungary – It all went down to the last second, and was not decided until the jury of officials looked at the video tape. When the decision was announced, it was bad news for Team USA.

Jacarra Winchester (Colorado Springs, Colo./Titan Mercury WC/OTC) dropped a controversial, heart-breaking match to battle 2012 World silver medalist Zalina Sidakova of Belarus, 2-1.

Here’s the picture. Sidakova led 2-1 as time was running down. Winchester nailed a powerful double leg with just seconds left on the clock. The athletes landed on the mat, and the referee gave her a two-point takedown, making it a last-second 3-2 win.

The coaches from Belarus challenged, saying that time ran out. The jury looked at the takedown on the big screen numerous times from numerous angles. After many minutes, where both athletes were watching from the mat, the decision came down. White paddle. No takedown. No points to Winchester. No victory.

Zalina Sidakova of Belarus advanced to the gold-medal finals. Jacarra Winchester of the United States will compete in a bronze medal bout, against an opponent to be decided in the repechage rounds Tuesday morning. Winchester will become the first U.S. woman with a chance to win a medal at the 2018 World Championships, but she was oh so close

During the semifinals, the fate of the other U.S. woman who competed on Monday was also determined.

When Elif Jale Yesilirmak of Turkey scored an 11-1 technical fall over Shoovdor Baatarjav of Mongolia in the 59 kg semifinals, that meant that U.S. wrestler Jenna Burkert (Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army WCAP) was not eligible to enter the repechage on Tuesday morning.

Shoovdor had beaten Burkert 1-1 in the first round of competition. Baatarjav needed to reach the finals in order for Burkert to wrestle back.

Finals in two weight classes were determined Monday night. Japan placed an athlete in both finals, Mayu Mukaida at 55 kg and Risako Kawai at 59 kg.

The finals are at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday in Budapest, which is 12:00 noon Eastern time zone. Don’t miss it. U.S. fans can see it live on TrackWrestling.

WORLD WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIPS
At Budapest, Hungary

Group One U.S. women’s freestyle performances


55 kg/121 lbs. - Jacarra Winchester, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Titan Mercury WC/OTC)
WIN Ramona Galambos (Hungary), 12-1
WIN Tetyana Kit (Ukraine), 4-2
LOSS Zalina Sidakova (Belarus), 2-1
Bronze Medal Bout – to be determined

59 kg/130 lbs. – Jenna Burkert, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army WCAP)
LOSS Shoovdor Baatarjav (Mongolia), 1-1

Finals pairings
55 kg - Zalina Sidakova (Belarus) vs. Mayu Mukaida (Japan)
59 kg - Risako Kawai (Japan) vs. Elif Jale Yesilirmak (Turkey)

Semifinal results

55 kg
Zalina Sidakova (Belarus) dec. Jacarra Winchester (USA), 2-1
Mayu Mukaida (Japan) dec. Qi Zhang (China), 8-1

59 kg
Risako Kawai (Japan) tech. fall Svetlana Lipitova (Russia), 10-0
Elif Jale Yesilirmak (Turkey) tech. fall Shoovdor Baatarjav (Mongolia) 11-1