Wim Ruska in 1968
|Full name||Willem Ruska|
|Nickname(s)||Tarzan of the Tatami|
|Born||29 August 1940|
Amsterdam, the Netherlands
|Died||14 February 2015 74)(aged|
|Height||1.89 m (6 ft 2 in)|
|Weight||94 kg (207 lb)|
Willem "Wim" Ruska (29 August 1940 – 14 February 2015) was a judoka from the Netherlands. He is the only athlete to win two gold medals in Judo in one Olympics – in the heavyweight and absolute categories in 1972.
The Netherlands is a country located mainly in Northwestern Europe. The European portion of the Netherlands consists of twelve separate provinces that border Germany to the east, Belgium to the south, and the North Sea to the northwest, with maritime borders in the North Sea with Belgium, Germany and the United Kingdom. Together with three island territories in the Caribbean Sea—Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba— it forms a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The official language is Dutch, but a secondary official language in the province of Friesland is West Frisian.
He started learning judo at the Dutch Navy, later traveling to Japan for further training. In the 1960s and 1970s, under the training of Jon Bluming, kg category (1966–67, 1969, 1971–72) and two in the open category (1969 and 1972). He furthermore won two world titles (1967 and 1971) and two Olympic titles. His success at the 1972 Summer Olympics was overshadowed by the Munich massacre that took place days before.he won seven European titles, five in the +93
Johannes Cornelius Bluming was a Dutch martial artist, instructor and actor. Known as a pioneer in variety of martial arts, Bluming held 9th dan in judo, 10th dan in Kyokushin Karate and 10th dan in Hapkido. He was also the coach of two-time Olympic champion Willem Ruska.
The 1972 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XX Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event held in Munich, West Germany, from August 26 to September 11, 1972.
The Munich massacre was an attack during the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, West Germany, in which the Palestinian terrorist group Black September took eleven Israeli Olympic team members hostage and killed them along with a West German police officer.
He retired after the 1972 Olympicsand later took part in professional wrestling.
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Ruska competed between 1976 and 1980 for the New Japan Pro Wrestling and World Wrestling Federation promotions. He had over 150 pro wrestling matches, in some of which he was the tag team partner of fellow judoka Allen Coage.
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In August 1976, Ruska fought vale tudo legend Ivan Gomes during a NJPW tour in Brazil.It is said he initially challenged the Gracie family, likely in response to a previous challenge they had made to Anton Geesink in 1965, but Gomes accepted to fight him instead. At 110kg, Gomes was significantly heavier than the 95kg Ruska. The bout was fought at least partially under pro wrestling rules, with NJPW worker Teruo Takahashi as the referee and the rule that every fighter would have to release any hold if his opponent grabbed the ropes.
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Details about the fight are sparse. Marcial Serrano wrote Gomes threw illegal strikes during the bout,though Keisuke Shibusawa claimed Ruska held his own and might have injured Gomes at some point. Anyway, at some other point Gomes captured Ruska's back and tried a rear naked choke, but they became tangled on the ring ropes; a photograph of the position exists in Shibusawa's book. A turmoil then happened, and referee Takahashi decreed victory for the Dutchman.
The rear naked choke (RNC) is a chokehold in martial arts applied from an opponent's back. The word "naked" in this context suggests that, unlike other strangulation techniques found in Jujutsu/Judo, this hold does not require the use of a keikogi ("gi") or training uniform.
The circumstances of this decision are unknown: Ivan's brother Jose claimed Ruska fell unconscious at the submission leaving unclear if he had grabbed the ropes or not, leading Takahashi to disqualify Gomes,while Shibusawa said the referee noted Gomes's body was positioned half out of the ropes, so he counted him out. In any case Brazilian crowds were infuriated and caused a turmoil. Local newspapers declared Gomes the winner of the match, and it was rumored Takahashi was expelled from Brazil due to what was perceived as a bad call.
Ruska was a close friend to sambo world champion Chris Dolman, also a Bluming understudy. They had a falling out after Dolman joined Akira Maeda's Fighting Network Rings while Ruska was part of Antonio Inoki's New Japan Pro Wrestling, but they mended it in September 1997, when Inoki visited Holland along with Naoya Ogawa. They stayed in contact until Ruska's death in 2015.
In 2001 Ruska suffered a major stroke which left him physically disabled.
In 2013 he was inducted in the Hall of Fame of the International Judo Federation.
Ruska was admitted to a nursing home in 2014. Ruska died on 14 February 2015 at the age of 74 and was survived by his wife, two children and five grandchildren.
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