Get To Know The Leopard Of Juybar, Reza Yazdani
This weekend, one of the best wrestlers of his generation returns to action when Reza Yazdani of Iran competes in the Kolov international tournament. Let's take a look at some of his greatest accomplishments on the mat in freestyle wrestling, and what made him so great.
The 97-kilogram wrestler is a two-time world champion, two-time Asian champion, and 2012 Olympic semifinalist, but tragically his career still somehow always felt hamstrung by injury. He first rose to prominence in 2006 and 2007 by winning the Asian games and then medaling twice at the world championships, picking up a bronze medal both times at 84-kilograms. After filling out his body to the next weight class up, the pressure-minded Iranian missed the 2008 Olympics but came back strong in 2011 with his best performance yet, a gold medal in the Asian and World championships, repeating that feat again in 2013. Unfortunately, in 2012, he was too injured to continue in the Olympic bracket, forfeiting his semifinal after advancing through a difficult bracket that was eventually won by Jake Varner of America.
The heavyweight champion of the world from the previous generation is back in action, and it's possible he faces off with one of the vanguards of the new generation, Kyle Snyder of America, a world and Olympic champion in his own regard. Iran has been down in performance in the last few years, but having one of their stars return to action may be the jolt they need to return to their usual prominence. Best of luck to the Leopard of Juybar.