Iranian kurash wrestler Mohammad Hossein Sheikholeslami has demonstrated outstanding athletic and gripping qualities at the fifth edition of Asian Beach Games in Vietnam, and scooped a gold medal at the continental sporting event.
On Sunday and the first day of the tournament, Sheikholeslami emerged triumphant in his first bout against Indian rival Gaurav Tokas at the minus 60-kilogram weight class in the south-central Vietnamese city of Da Nang.
The 26-year-old Iranian sportsman then overcame his Vietnamese opponent Vo Pham Hoang An in the quarterfinal round, and marched into the final bout.
Sheikholeslami overwhelmed Mongolian Chinbat Otgon in the final contest, and was awarded the top honor.
The Turkmen national wrestling competition, kurash (also written as goresh), is a kind of wrestling on belts that has ancient roots, and dates back to as early as the 3rd century BC. Wrestlers need to earn points by forcing the opponent to touch the mat with any part of the body except a foot.
Kurash competitions are staged in four formats, namely round, shootout, mixed and team.
During the round format contests, athletes compete with all wrestlers in the same weight category. If there are many wrestlers in one weight division, the participants are divided into two groups. Wrestlers who earn the first and second places in each group will be in action for the final showdowns.
Wrestlers are eliminated from the rest of the competition once they lose in the shootout format.
In the mixed format, wrestlers start with the round format for the preliminary round and then shift to the shootout format.
According to the team format, only one athlete from each weight category of a team is allowed to participate. Participating teams will fight one-on-one in the competitions.
The 5th edition of Asian Beach Games opened in Da Nang, Vietnam, on September 24, and will run until October 3.