Patrick Martinez (80 kg) has received his first round draw for the 2016 Non-Olympic Weight World Championships and it’s a somewhat familiar face to US fans. Ashkat Dilmukhamedov (KAZ) has competed on US soil, having earned a bronze medal at the 2015 Dave Schultz Memorial and participated in the Jack Pinto Cup during that same trip, where he lost to Geordan Speiller (Florida Jets). At the Schultz, Dilmukhamedov defeated Cheney Haight (80 kg, NYAC) in a match he was in control of throughout.
Dilmukhamedov, coincidentally, also defeated Martinez in the repechage round of the 2015 World Championships in Las Vegas.
Some of Dilmukhamedov’s accomplishments are substantial. He’s taken fifth at the World Championships twice (2011 and 2015) to go along with a bronze at the Asian Championships (2011) and a silver at the Golden Grand Prix (2010). If you have seen Dilmukhamedov in action his style isn’t surprising. He is hawkish and uses a wide base to dig in underhooks, a position he can be especially dangerous from. On occasion he’s dipped down and in for bodylocks and can snatch an arm for throws, but he isn’t the most angular athlete in the world. Dilmukhamedov is a bit of a plodder in the ties and leans in to bring his weight forward. However, he is a pretty active hand-fighter though that is also a considerable strength for Martinez.
Martinez is likely the better all-around athlete of the two and has a leg-up in the conditioning department, at least going by a few of Dilmukhamedov’s more recent performances. It’s a guess as to what the American’s exact strategy might be, but if Martinez can dictate the tempo it will help immensely, given how opportunistic Dilmukhamedov can be once he’s in a position where he feels confident. It will be interesting to see if Martinez can wear him out in exchanges and fight for his own underhooks, an area of his game that has become quite a weapon.
Martinez is in the bottom half of the bracket. Should he advance past Dilmukhamedov, he will have the winner of up-and-coming Armenian Sargis Kocharyan and Igor Besleaga (MDA). The second and final day of the 2016 Non-Olympic Weight World Championships begins at 10:00am in Budapest, Hungary (4:00am EST). We will have live coverage and summaries following the event, so stay tuned!