Phulka and Balfour to wrestle-off for spot at Olympic Qualifier
CALGARY – Jasmit Phulka and Jevon Balfour will wrestle-off for the 74 kg place on the Canadian team at the Pan-American Olympic Qualification Tournament.
The wrestle-off will take place on February 8 at the Jack Simpson Gym at the University of Calgary. Wrestling begins at 1:00 pm MT.
Phulka, who competes for the Burnaby Mountain Wrestling Club, won the Canadian Wrestling Trials in December after defeating Tyler Rowe in two straight finals matches. Balfour, of the Brock Wrestling Club, qualified for the wrestle-off through an injury provision.
Phulka goes into the wrestle-off with a 1-0 lead in a best-of-three matches final. Balfour will need to win both matches to qualify for the Olympic Qualifier.
The two wrestled in the finals at the 2019 Senior Canadian Championships. Phulka had the only takedown of the match, but Balfour narrowly won 3-2 by scoring on a push-out with 19 seconds left.
In 2019 Balfour captured a bronze medal at 74 kg at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. He was forced to withdraw from the World Championships due to an injury. Phulka stepped in to compete at 74 kg at the World Championships where he finished 28th.
The Pan-American Olympic Qualification Tournament will take place in Ottawa from March 13 to 15. The top-two finishers at that event will qualify for a quota spot at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
The winner of the wrestle-off will also have right of first refusal for the 2020 Senior Pan-American Championships, which are also taking place in Ottawa from March 6 to 9.