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Angle vs. Jadidi is the new “Bout of the Week” on USA Wrestling Members-Only website



USA Wrestling has updated its new "Bout of the Week" on USA Wrestling's Members-Only website The featured match this week is the Kurt Angle vs. Abbas Jadidi gold-medal match at 100 kg/220 lbs. at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Ga. This matchup featured the 1995 World Champion Kurt Angle against Iran's top star in his division, Abbas Jadidi. The bout was close and hard fought and went in overtime, with the referees making the ultimate decision about which wrestler became Olympic champion. Angle burst onto the international wrestling scene in 1995, when he earned a spot on the U.S. World Team and went on to win the gold medal at his division at the Freestyle World Championships in Atlanta, Ga. It was a powerful performance for a man on his first U.S. team. He defeated 1994 World champion Arawat Sabejew of Germany in the gold-medal match on a 1-1 referees decision. He had been NCAA champion at heavyweight at Clarion, but competed at 220 pounds for his international career. Angle combined great strength at this weight class, with a very solid set of technical skills. He also showed a knack for winning close matches, often by referee's decision, especially against difficult opponents. Angle did not have a long resume in international wrestling, winning a couple of World Cup medals and international tournaments in places like France, Slovakia and Russia. Jadidi made international news in 1993, when he won the World gold medal at 90 kg/198 lbs. in Toronto, Canada. It was his first World Championship appearance for Jadidi. He defeated American Melvin Douglas in the gold medal match, 2-1 in overtime, which had some controversy, as Jadidi received two questionable escapes to win. However, that gold medal was stripped away when Jadidi tested positive for doping, and was punished with a two-year suspension. Douglas was awarded the gold medal months after the tournament ended. In his first World Championships after returning from the drug suspension, Jadidi won a World bronze medal in Atlanta, in the same arena where Angle won his World Championships gold medal. Going into the 1996 Atlanta Games, both Angle and Jadidi were expected to challenge for the title. After making the 1996 U.S. Olympic team, Angle was prepared for the Atlanta Olympics. He won four close matches to earn his spot in the gold-medal finals, including a third round 4-3 win over Sahid Murtazaliyev of Ukraine (who went on to win the 2000 Olympics for Russia). On the other side of the pairings, Jadidi likewise worked through the field, to set up an anticipated USA vs. Iran showdown for gold. The match was tight, tied at 1-1 at the end of five minutes. In the three-minute overtime, neither wrestler scored. Both had two passivity calls against them. The decision went to the officials. Wrestling fans will remember the result, when the referee raised Angle's arm in victory. Angle went down to his knees and cried on the mat, capturing the attention of the international media. Jadidi complained bitterly to the officials in a demonstrative way, upset that he should have gotten the call. It was the last "real" wrestling match in Angle's career. He decided to retire, to pursue other goals. His first wish was to be an actor in the movies. He landed a job serving as a local sportscaster for the television station in Pittsburgh. His career took off when he signed a contract with World Wrestling Entertainment to compete in professional wrestling. Playing off his Olympic champion theme, wearing a uniform that looked similar to his singlet for the United States, Angle became a very popular and successful pro wrestler. He exposed his amateur wrestling background to millions who followed the pro wrestling/entertainment scene. He even wrote a book, describing his amateur and professional wrestling career. Since then, Angle has been elected as a Distinguished Member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, celebrating his brief but shining international career where he won gold medals in the Worlds and Olympics in back-to-back seasons. Jadidi wrestled another six years for Iran and expanded upon a distinguished career of accomplishments. He finally earned his World gold medal in 1998, winning the title on his home mats in Tehran, Iran. He won World Cup and Asian Games titles, as well. In 1999, Jadidi moved up to super heavyweight, competing at 286 pounds. He was a bronze-medalist at the 1999 World Championships and placed a solid fourth at the 2000 Olympic Games, losing the bronze-medal match to Cuban star Alexis Rodriguez. His final World Championships was in 2001, where he placed seventh in the standings. Jadidi remains a popular wrestling figure in Iran, because of his many achievements as well as his personality and style of wrestling. Fans still dispute whether officials made the right decision on the fateful day in Atlanta, when Angle and Jadidi battled to a dead-draw and the FILA officiating team decided who would be Olympic Champion. You too can watch the match and decide for yourself. This popular feature will be changed on a regular basis, allowing members to enjoy many of the greatest matches in wrestling history. Posted in the archive section of the Members Only web page was the 1990 Chris Wilson vs. Arsen Fadzeav men's freestyle match from the Goodwill Games. Many other entertaining and historic matches are in the archive section for the Bout of the Week. USA Wrestling has done a complete redesign and expansion of its Members-Only website, providing all USA Wrestling members with an impressive new resource stocked with interactive learning tools and entertaining features. The web page is still available for all to view and sample for a short time. This will allow those not familiar with the site to enjoy the contents and become familiar with the features. Once the sampling period ends, this on-line resource is available free of charge only to current members of USA Wrestling, one of the most exciting benefits of joining the organization. At that time, USA Wrestling members will need to enter the number from their 2004-05 membership card into an entry form, and the exciting new Members-Only page will become available to them. RECENT BOUTS OF THE WEEK PLACED IN ARCHIVE 1990 Chris Wilson vs. Arsen Fadzeav men's freestyle match 1990 John Smith vs. Stepan Sarkissian men's freestyle match 2004 Sunkist Kids International Open men's Greco-Roman gold-medal matches 2004 Sunkist Kids International Open men's freestyle gold-medal matches 1990 Bill Scherr vs. Alexei Golovko men's freestyle match 2004 Cael Sanderson vs. Moon Eui Jae men's freestyle match 2004 Rulon Gardner Olympic semifinals and finals men's Greco-Roman feature 2004 Sara McMann vs. Stavroula Zygouri women's freestyle match 2004 Toccara Montgomery vs. Kristie Marano women's freestyle match 2004 Joe Williams vs. Joe Heskett men's freestyle match 2004 Eric Guerrero vs. Mike Zadick men's freestyle match 2004 Cael Sanderson vs. Lee Fullhart men's freestyle match 2004 Dennis Hall vs. Brandon Paulson men's Greco-Roman match 1996 Townsend Saunders vs. Pat Santoro men's freestyle match 1988 Mark Fuller vs. T.J. Jones men's Greco-Roman match 1988 Nate Carr vs. Andre Metzger men's freestyle match 2004 Jared Frayer vs. Eric Larkin men's freestyle match 1987 Bill Scherr vs. Greg Gibson men's freestyle match 1992 Dennis Koslowski vs. Andrzej Wronski men's Greco-Roman match 1989 Jim Scherr vs. Makharbek Khadartsev men's freestyle match 2003 Sally Roberts vs. Marianna Sastin women's freestyle match 1996 Melvin Douglas vs. Mike Van Arsdale men's freestyle match 1988 Ike Anderson vs. Buddy Lee men's Greco-Roman match 1996 Tom Brands vs. Jang Jae-Sung men's freestyle match 2004 Eric Larkin vs. T.J. Williams men's freestyle match 1992 Rodney Smith vs. Cecilio Rodriguez men's Greco-Roman match 1988 Rico Chiapparelli vs. Lukman Jabrailov men's freestyle match 2003 Kristie Marano vs. Ewelina Pruszko women's freestyle match 1999 Stephen Neal vs. Andrei Shumilin men's freestyle match 2003 Cael San
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