Budapest, 20 March 2021 - By entering the finals of the pre-Olympic qualifying competition in Budapest, member of the Croatian National Wrestling Team - Greco-Roman wrestler Božo Starčević - secured his appearance at the Tokyo Olympics in the category -77kg.

Starčević defeated Poland's Wolny in the first fight with technical supremacy (8-0), Azerbaijan's Sulejmanov in the quarterfinals based on the last point scored (after the final 1-1) and Czech Varga with 3-1 in the semifinals. His rival for gold is Russia's Chekhirkin.

In addition to Starčević, we have four more members of the Croatian National Team competing in Olympic categories in Budapest: Marko Koščević (up to 130 kg), Ivan Huklek (87 kg), Danijel Janečić (up to 67 kg) and Ivan Lizatović (up to 60 kg), and the latter duo will also fight for medals. Lizatović was pulled into the repechage by Germany's Kinsinger, who defeated him in the quarterfinals (8-2). Janečić lost in the quarterfinals to Georgia's Zoidze (0-8), who also entered the finals, so the Croatian representative finished in the repechage with the chance to win a bronze medal. However, regardless of possible medals, neither Lizatović nor Janečić won the performance in Tokyo.

Marko Koščević also has a chance for repechage in the 130kg category, after he lost in the quarterfinals to Lithuanian Knystautas (1-3), while Ivan Huklek lost the first match in the category up to 87kg to Armenia's Shahinyan who scored more points (6-2).  

The Croatian Olympic Committee (HOO) congratulates Božo Starčević on the secured "visa" for Tokyo and wishes him a new impressive Olympic performance, following the one in Rio in 2016, when he ranked 5th. Now the wishes refer to stepping onto the winning podium!