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Olympic champion Tong wins 3rd gold for China at Judo Grand Prix

(Xinhua)

10:50, December 19, 2011

QINGDAO, East China, Dec. 18 (Xinhua) -- Hosts China claimed their third gold medal at the Judo Grand Prix Qingdao 2011 here on Sunday as Beijing Olympic champion Tong Wen clinched the women's over 78kg title.

Tong, winner of the category at the Paris worlds this year, beat her teammate Qin Qian in the final by an ippon. She upset compatriot Kang Jie in the semifinal by ippon to make the final, while Qin defeated Karina Bryant of Britain in the other semifinal.

"I am very happy with the gold because I am competing at home," said Tong. "China always have advantage in the women's over 78kg category and I want to keep the advantage for my country."

"I will do my best to win the gold at the London Games," said the 28-year old. "It is my dream."

Apart from Tong's success, China also took a silver in the women's 78kg division Sunday as Beijing Olympic champion Yang Xiuli lost to American Kayla Harrison in the final. Lucie Louette of France and Zhang Jie of China shared the third places.

"I lost to Harrison this time, but I will try not to lose at the Olympic Games. My goal is to win the Olympic title again," said Yang.

China pocketed three golds, two silvers and three bronzes at the Grand Prix in Qingdao.

"Actually it is the best results for us recently," said Fu Guoyi, head coach of the Chinese women's judo team. "The Grand Prix was an important competition before the Olympic Games which attracted many strong judokas here, so three golds is quite satisfying."

Xu Lili claimed the women's 63kg title while Chen Fei triumphed in the women's 70kg Saturday.

However, the Chinese men's team didn't win a medal at the Grand Prix. "The men's team still need to improve," said Fu.

Japan and South Korea also claimed their third gold Sunday as Nishiyama Masashi won the men's 90kg by beating Hesham Mesbah of Egypt and Hwang Hee-Tae upset Levan Zhorzholiani of Georgia to win the men's 100kg.

Belarus won their first gold Sunday in the men's over 100kg as Ihar Makarau defeated South Korean Kim Sung-Min by an ippon.

The Judo Grand Prix Qingdao 2011, which attracts 409 judokas from 61 countries and regions, runs from Dec. 16 to 18.

 
 
 
 
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