Gold was so close

Maria Mamoshuk wins wrestling silver in Rio

Maria Mamoshuk wins wrestling silver in Rio

Maria Mamoshuk claims silver in women’s wrestling
There is a specific aspect about winning Olympic medals. Have you ever noted that, as a rule, the moods of those climbing the pedestal are polar: gold and bronze award winners are joyful and happy — because they’ve just won.

As soon as the referee announced the champion, Japan’s Risako Kawai, Mamoshuk rushed from the carpet to the athletes’ room. Her coaches, Oleg Raikhlin and Sergey Smal, followed her. Smal, a well-known maximalist, was vexed because of Masha’s persistent fight rather than the defeat itself (Mamoshuk’s silver medal is the first Olympic award in the history of Belarusian women’s fighting, why to be upset!). A wrestler himself, he lost his gold medal chance at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. Attacking, attacking and still attacking — Smal would wrestle very technically and demanded the same from his fosterling. She failed to win the gold award, therefore she was a little bit sad — but wrestling has its own laws.

However, any Olympic awards are weighty and hard to get. Entering semi-finals was a challenge for Maria, but she defeated the mighty American whose name was respectfully listed in the official standing with a patronymic — Yelena Sergeevna Pirozhkova. Born in Novokuznetsk, the American wrestler was thirsting for the gold award, but was confronted by our Masha and crashed out. Mamoshuk also easily defeated Kazakhstan’s Larionova. Yet, the finals turned not that good.

Have you made up your mind on how you’ll spend your vacations?

“I’ll go to my mother’s place. I miss her very much, we don’t have a chance to see each other often. I’ll also meet my friends. So, I’ll have fun at home, lying on my sofa. I like wrestling and want to continue fighting,” said Maria Mamoshuk, her eyes sparkled. She promised to take revenge over the Japanese at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

By Kirill Dovlatov
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