2011 World Veterans Championships
November 7, 2011
Filed under News
Scotland’s Bobby McLucas competed as part of the four-strong GB team at the recent World Veterans Championships in Freestyle Wrestling. Having won silver the previous year in Switzerland, Bobby entered the 76kg category in Tirana, Albania with high hopes of a medal. The Tryst Lions wrestler sent the following report from the championships:
Old Men Go to War – Bobby McLucas
OK, the World Veterans Wrestling Championship may not be a war, but the wrestlers there do take it very seriously. The hotbeds of the wrestling countries always turn up with large teams and this year’s competition in Albania was no exception. The bouts on the mat are fiercely contested and are often decided by a single point. This year there were also highlights of each day’s competition on Albanian TV, but it did seem to center on the Albanian wrestlers.
After last year’s silver I felt I had a chance to do even better, but I lost to Argentina in the quarter-finals: no excuses, I just did not wrestle well. Thankfully for me he made it to the final, which gave me a bronze medal match via the Repechage system. The match was against one of the weaker countries – Turkey (ha ha!). There is always a great atmosphere when Turkish wrestlers are on the mat as they are so passionate about the sport; it helps to bring out the best in you. As a result I ‘ hammered ‘ him over 3 rounds. The first I won via the clinch, the second was 1-1, with him scoring the last point to win that round, the 3rd I won 4-0. Mind you the Turk did complain to the referee in the last 20 secs of the round that I wasn’t trying to wrestle, who would?, 4 points up and 20 seconds away from a bronze medal in a world championships.
I must admit to not only having Jimmy Hawthorne from Bradford in my corner but also Eric Pochere, 5 times world veterans champion from Germany as well ( long story ). Veterans is also about making friends so I had great support from GBR ( Jimmy ), the German team, Team USA ( they like us Brits ) and South Africa ( don’t know why ).
At the end of the bouts, the wrestlers always genuinely congratulate each other, showing mutual respect, appreciating the effort that has been made to drag your old body to the mat, knowing how hard it’s been. It makes you wonder why we do it. Well I think we do it because we can, we do it because we want to, and I do it because I’m still missing a particular colour of medal.