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Israeli wrestler wins bronze medal at European championships

CM 22/04/2021

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 Mitch Finesilver showcased his elite wrestling skills with a high-energy performance by securing a bronze medal at the European championships on Wednesday in Warsaw, Poland

Finesilver, who is currently Israel’s most decorated wrestler, competing in the international freestyle arena, told The Jerusalem Post that “My thoughts on winning are that I am very thankful for the people who have supported me and work with me every day. That includes my club the New York City Regional Training Center (NYCRTC) along with my coaches there, Kendall Cross and Valantin Kalika. Without them I wouldn’t have won the bronze medal. They help me progress a little bit every day. I am also thankful for the support of the Israeli wrestling federation and all the people involved with that. For me this is a small step in a bigger goal.”
He added that “This was not a qualifier for the Olympics. I had Magamed Zubairov and my teammate Uri Kalashnikov in my corner because my regular coach couldn’t make it.”
Finesilver won the bronze in the highly competitive -74-kg weight class.
Jason Bryant, who is a Hall of Fame Sportswriter in the US covering wrestling and a broadcaster for the National Collegiate Athletic Association and Olympic wrestling, told the Post that “Representing Israel, he must have the same type of self-starting mentality like he did in college. Neither is a wrestling powerhouse and whenever a wrestler from either Duke [University] or Israel does well, it gets noticed. What’s interesting about one of his matches is it was against Malik Amine of San Marino. He’s from Michigan and wrestled at the University of Michigan. You’re starting to see a lot of Americans with dual citizenship start to represent other nations, maybe not as prolifically as the former Russians who represent ex-Soviet republics, but enough to where American fans are following more athletes worldwide.”
Bryant said that “It’s not been easy for any athlete to train for international competitions amid the pandemic. Mitch has a killer instinct that served him well at Duke, which unlike most Division I wrestling programs, doesn’t offer athletic scholarships for wrestling. So he had to work that much harder. In working with the New York City RTC, he’s got a group of experienced coaches who are pushing him.”
The NYCRTC tweeted: “Good day for Italy!  Good day for Israel!  Great day for NYCRTC!
@ChamizoFrank @mitchieboy_fine #Euros #warsaw2021.”

Finesilver attended Duke University in Durham, North Carolina where he earned All-American status at the 2019 National Collegiate Athletic Association Wrestling Championships by placing fourth.

After Finesilver  won a bronze medal at France’s Henri Deglane wrestling competition in January, he told the Post:
“I have a lot of pride being able to represent Israel on the world’s stage,” he said. “It’s amazing to be able to represent my culture and heritage.”
David Bray, a sports journalist for FloWrestling, told the Post that “Mitch Finesilver’s European bronze medal performance was impressive. After falling to eventual silver medalist Miroslav Kirov of Bulgaria, he defeated former University of Michigan starter Malik Amine of San Marino and Junior European bronze medalist Valentin Borzin of Moldova. He shared bronze medal honors with two-time World champion Frank Chamizo, a training partner at the New York City Regional Training Center.”
Bray added that “ Finesilver continues to show progress on the international scene. He’ll have his work cut out for him at the World Olympic Games Qualifier in May, but this result is promising.”
Tajmuraz Salkazanov of Slovakia won the gold medal at the European championship. Finesilver’s matches can be watched on the website of  United World Wrestling (UWW).
Mike Kosoy, an Assistant Wrestling Coach at Oregon State University, tweeted about Finesilver’s performance: “One of the hardest working dudes I know! @mitchieboy_fine is one of the good guys!”
Jon Kozak, a writer for FloWrestling, wrote on Twitter: “Great wrestling from Mitch Finesilver to win bronze at the 2021 European Championships!”

Source: Jerusalem Post

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