Team Canada came away with three gold medals and five medals overall this past weekend at the Matteo Pellicone in Rome, Italy, a premier international wrestling competition. Canadian Olympic gold medalist Erica Wiebe of Ottawa, Ontario won the gold medal in the women’s 76-kilogram division on Friday, Michelle Fazzari of Hamilton, Ontario won the gold medal in the women’s 62-kilogram category also on Friday, and Amar Dhesi of Surrey, British Columbia won the gold medal in the men’s 125-kilogram division on Saturday. Team Canada also won a silver medal from Diana Weicker of Kentville, Nova Scotia, and a bronze medal from Samantha Stewart of London, Ontario in the women’s 53-kilogram division on Saturday.
In the women’s 76-kilogram division, Wiebe, who won the gold medal in women’s wrestling for Canada at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in the women’s 75-kilogram division, defeated Mariya Gerginova Oryashkova of Bulgaria by a forfeit in the qualification round, Aline Da Silva Ferreira of Brazil 5-1 in the quarterfinal, Elmira Syzdykova of Kazakhstan 2-0 in the semifinal, and Samar Amer Ibrahim Hamza of Egypt 10-0 in the gold medal match. Hamza won the silver medal, while Syzdykova and Matilde Caldarelli of Italy each won bronze.
In the women’s 62-kilogram division, Fazzari defeated Ayaulym Kassymova of Kazakhstan 8-7, and Marianna Sastin of Hungary 5-3 in Group B action, before beating Irina Kuznetsova of Kazakhstan in the semifinals and Sastin 2-1 in the gold medal match. Sastin won the silver, and Lais Nunes De Oliveira of Brazil won the bronze medal.
In the men’s 125-kilogram division, Dhesi won the gold medal with a record of three wins and one loss. He defeated Sumit Sumit of India 14-4, Anthony Nelson of the United States 5-0, and Oleg Boltin of Kazakhstan 4-0, before losing 11-0 to Yusup Batirmurzaev of Kazakhstan. Batirmurzaev won silver and Nelson won bronze.
In the women’s 53-kilogram category, Weicker and Stewart reached the podium in the same weight class. Weicker beat Assylzat Sagymbay of Kazakhstan 12-2 and beat Stewart 9-4 in Group B. Stewart meanwhile won her other Group B match by beating Sagymbay 2-0. In the semifinals, Weicker defeated Nandini Bajirao Salokhe of India 12-2 before losing to Vinesh Vinesh of India 4-0 in the gold medal match. Stewart lost 4-0 to Vinesh 4-0 in the other semifinal before beating Salokhe 6-0 in the bronze medal match. The medals for Wiebe, Fazzari, Dhesi, Weicker and Stewart, will give them confidence as they prepare for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo in 2021.