Wiebe and Fazzari win gold, Di Bacco bronze in Rome
ROME – Canada took home three medals on the first day of competition at the Matteo Pellicone in Rome. Erica Wiebe and Michelle Fazzari won gold, while Olivia Di Bacco captured bronze.
Wiebe, of Stittsville, Ont., won the 76 kg gold medal match by technical superiority 10-0 over Samar Amer Ibrahim Hamza of Egypt. Wiebe scored in the final seconds of the match to secure the victory.
“This tournament has some of the best wrestlers in the world,” said Wiebe, 31. “It’s a good check in on where I’m at in my preparations. I’m still getting the kinks out, but overall, I’m happy with how I wrestled.”
Fazzari won gold at 62 kg by defeated Marianna Sastin of Hungary 2-1 in the 62 kg final. Fazzari beat the Hungarian earlier in the day in the round-robin 5-3, but faced a tougher test in the final.
“I think I wrestled pretty well,” said Fazzari. “This tournament acted as a good opportunity to find out where we are, what we need to work on, and filling in those gaps. Getting used to the whole process, the warmup, the nerves, and how I feel mentally and physically on the mat.”
The 33-year-old from Hamilton, Ont., is still seeking her second Olympic berth, and will be competing in the World Olympic Qualification Tournament in May.
Di Bacco took bronze with a 6-4 win over Alexandria Glaude of USA in the 68 kg bronze medal match. Di Bacco, of Orillia, Ont., was trailing 2-4 at the break, but scored some key takedowns in the second half.
For Wiebe and Di Bacco, it’s their second international medals in a week, after Wiebe captured bronze and Di Bacco silver in Kiev, Ukraine on February 27.
Action resumes tomorrow with Diana Weicker, Samantha Stewart and Amar Dhesi hitting the mats in Rome.
The Matteo Pellicone is part of United World Wrestling’s Ranking Series, and will contribute towards seeding points at the Tokyo Olympics.
Event results and webcast are available at United World Wrestling’s event page.