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Defending champion early exit, Azerbaijan makes history in judo
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08:18, August 12, 2008

There have been quite highlights as well as upsets in Monday's judo competition at the Beijing Olympic Games and gold medals were distributed to more countries.

In men's 73kg category, judokas from Middle Asian Azerbaijan and Tajikistan proved their abilities by grabbing gold and bronze medals which both created the best results in judo for the two countries.

Elnur Mammadli, silver medalist of world championships 2007, ousted South Korean Ki Chun Wang in the final by making an ippon victory with just 13 seconds.

Cheered by his compatriots shouting at the stands, Mammadli could not believe his sudden victory when the referee gestured an ippon. He confirmed the result by staring at the referee also with a finger gesture when still bended knees on the mat.

The gold medalist contributed his success a lot to his native supporters, saying "I'm bowing deeply in front of the people of Azerbaijan."

He bit the medal when standing at the top platform to taste his first Olympic champion, his best international result before coming to Beijing was silver medal of the 2007 world championships in Rio de janeiro.

Rasul Boquiev from Tajikistan outscored Dirk van Tichelt from Belgium to win the bronze medal after he was defeated by Wang.

"Actually it is the first Olympic medal for Tajikistan," Boquiev said, "I'm just very glad that my country gave me the opportunity to come here to compete in this category."

"My success will prove that there are also people who are good at judo in Tajikistan," he added.

Leandro Guilheiro from Brazil won his second consecutive Olympic bronze medal by throwing down Ali Malomat from Iran with an ippon after qualifying from a repechage.

There had been two upsets in women's competition. Sun Hui Kye from DPRK was ousted at her second fight. She has been one of the favorite judoka in the category for her two world championships titles before the games.

Kye, who won gold medal in women's 48kg class in Atlanta, has played four Olympic Games in straight. She changed herself to 52kg and gained a bronze medal in Sydney, then changed again to 57kg and won a silver in Athens.

Defending champion Yvonne Boenisch of Germany was outscored by the goldmedalist Quintavalle at the first round. She failed again in repechage which has been a surprise to many.

Italian Giulia Quintavalle outscored Deborah Gravenstijn from the Netherlands in the final, adding the third gold medal to Italy at the Beijing Olympic Games.

China's Xu Yan, outscored Barbara Harel of France coming from repechage at first and then ipponed to win the other bronze.

Being an underdog in the class, Xu flipped herself and called for cheering from mass Chinese spectators after winning. She outscored Japan's Aiko Sato, world bronze medalist in 2007, but was halted by Gravenstijn at semifinal.

Xu and Japan's Aiko Sato performed a dramatic bout in which they were both penalized by a koka for foul. Later, Sato scored another koka in a sudden attack, but the Japanese fouled again which surrendered a decisive yuko advantage to Xu.

"I have won against her for four times, so I felt quite easy in fighting against her today," said Xu Yan who was beaten by Sato in Asian Championships last year in Kuwait City.


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