Picture: Jesse Thielke of the USA gets his arm raised after beating Mehrad Mardani of Iran in the 59 kg bronze-medal bout in Baku, Azerbaijan. Photo courtesy of Matt Lindland.
Thielke wins Greco-Roman bronze medal at UWW Golden Grand Prix Finals in Azerbaijan
By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Nov. 29, 2015, 9:19 a.m. (ET)
BAKU, Azerbaijan – Jesse Thielke (Germantown, Wis./New York AC) won a bronze medal at 59 kg/130 lbs., the top U.S. performance in Greco-Roman on the final day of the UWW Golden Grand Prix Finals on Sunday.
Thielke, who was eighth in the 2013 World Championships, defeated 2012 Asian Junior champion Mehrad Mardani of Iran, 8-4 in the bronze-medal round.
Thielke opened with a 6-2 win over 2010 World University champion Mohsen Hajipour of Iran, 6-2. He followed with a pin over 2014 South American Games silver medalist Juan Carlos Lopez of Colombia. In the semifinals, he was defeated by 2013 World bronze medalist Elmurat Tasmuradov in a 4-14 technical fall.
He enters the season at No. 2 in the USA, after placing second behind two-time Olympian Spenser Mango in the 2015 World Team Trials. Thielke, a 2012 Junior World bronze medalist, took an Olympic redshirt this year from the University of Wisconsin. He was the lone American in the medal rounds in Baku in Greco-Roman.
“Jesse is going to make a huge impact. We are so happy to have Jesse back in the fold training and competing full-time in Greco-Roman. He beat some very good guys and we are just getting started,” said National Greco-Roman Coach Matt Lindland.
“This was a valuable experience for the Greco athletes. We had an amazing three-week training camp here with the Azerbaijan team. We are building bridges internationally and setting up training opportunities that we need to keep improving and growing as a team. I am proud to coach the Greco team. These men are building a reputation that they will stay in every match and fight to the last bell. This is an incredibly tough tournament, basically all the best guys in the world since you have to qualify to enter. We are continuing to progress,” said Lindland.
Jesse Thielke Greco-Roman performances on Sunday
59 kg/130 lbs. – Jesse Thielke, Germantown, Wis. (New York AC), bronze medal
WIN Mohsen Hajipour (Iran), 6-2
WIN Juan Carlos Lopes (Colombia), pin
LOSS Elmurat Tasmuradov (Uzbekistan), tech. fall 4-14
WIN Mehrad Mardani (Iran), 8-4