Anatoly Bondarenko The News Caravan
Anatoly Bondarenko, considered one of the greatest sambo practitioners in history and a two-time European judo champion, passed away in Moscow this weekend at the age of 77. International Sambo Federation vice president Sergey Eliseev reportedly told the Russian news agency TASS Bondarenko had been sick for some time but succumbed to the COVID-19 virus.
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Sambo Bite Mark ©FIAS

Nikita Kletskov takes off his uniform to show what appears to be a bite mark on his back

Feature Grappling, Knockouts and a Bite

The 2021 World Sambo Championships concluded Sunday in Uzbekistan with Russian athletes making a late surge to once again reassert their dominance in the sport they founded. Led by Magomed Magomedov's big knee strike knockout of Sokhibjon Khasanboev in the 88 kg combat sambo finals, Russians earned four gold medals on the last day to push their total for the tournament to 8 golds and 18 overall medals.
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Nina Cutro Kelly Sambo

While researching Team USA's Judoka, Nina Cutro-Kelly, for a recent article regarding the Tokyo Olympics, I came across her incredible career highlights. The Olympic Judoka was a three-time bronze medalist in the World Championships, two-time Super World Cup Champion, and two-time Pan-American Champion. It may be of interest to note that none of these titles are in Judo. All of these titles were won in Russian Sambo.

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European Sambo Championships

The European Sambo Championships, held this past weekend in Cyprus, saw the entire team from Azerbaijan disqualified for unsportsmanlike conduct. As a consequence the results of all team members, including Eyvaz Bakhshiyev's bronze medal, were canceled.

The team disqualification stems from a match where Russia's Magomed Gadzhiev defeated Azerbaijan's Emil Hasanov in the 71 kg division. With the Azerbaijanis unhappy over the outcome, it's reported the whole team stormed the mat leading to altercations and the decision to remove them from the tournament.

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