Wednesday, September 10, 2008

China wraps up judo event with 4 golds

China's Yuan Yanping won the country's fourth judo gold at the women's +70 kg with three straight ippons on Tuesday.

The 32-year-old Yuan, an English major graduate from the Beijing International Studies Univerty, proved her all-around ability with her first Paralympic gold after outgunning Brazilian Deanne Silva within 70 seconds.

Yuan's victory, together with a silver from the men's +100 kg event by Wang Song, lift China to the top of the judo medal tally with four golds, two silvers and one bronze. Algeria was ranked the second with two golds and one bronze and Brazil in third with one gold, two silvers and two bronzes.

Yuan, a hot favorite after winning the title at the last two World Championships in 2006 and 2007, finally had her "extremely tough" training over the past nine months paid off.

The woman from the coastal city of Dalian in northeastern Liaoning Province is pretty homesick as she has not see her families for 11 months.

"The training is so hard that my tears could make a river except that my coach didn't know it," said Yuan. "There is no other way to success except hard practice. I have discovered my potentials following the strict requirements of my coach. Surely, I have a lot of gratitude for my coach, but I would also like to thank myself for being hard-working."

Though having clear plan for her future career, Yuan said she would like to continue working in sports.

"I want to do some contribution to the sports for the disabled people in China," she said.

Another star in the last day judo competition is Brazil's veteran player Antonio Tenorio Silva, who set a new record at Paralympic judo event in terms of gold number by winning his fourth championship in men's -100kg division.

Azerbaijan's Karim Sardarov took the silver, while Cuban Juan Carlos Cortada and Mykola Lyivytskyi from Ukraine shared the bronze medals.

The 37-year-old Brazilian made the history in a perfect way with four ippons in row. His previous three golds were won in the -100kgclass in Athens, in the -90kg class in Sydney and in the -86kg division in Atlanta.

"This medal is not only for me but for my country and all the Brazillians, especially for the 50 million disabled Brazillians," he said. "I've got four gold medals in the Paralympics. Each of them has a story. This one is like this -- some people think I'm 37years old and it's too old to win, but I've won again."

The Azerbaijan judokas appeared to be facing a night of frustration after first Tofig Mammadov in the -90kg class and then Karim Sardarov in the -100kg division lost their gold medal matches. But happiness came in the end as defending champion Ilham Zakiyev triumphed in the men's +100kg division for the country's first judo gold at the Beijing Games

Zakiyev overcame the host player Wang Song by osaekomi ippon within 20 seconds. French Julien Taurines and American Greg Dewall took the bronze.

"I felt so happy to win the medal. I'd like to dedicate the gold to my country and my family. Many thanks to Azerbaijan president. He loves sports," said Zakiyev.

In another two finals of the day, Oleg Kretsul won Russia's first judo gold in Beijing at the Men's -90kg event. He defeated Tofig Mammadov from Azerbaijan on points, scoring late with a waza-ari. Bronzes went to French Olivier Cugnon de Sevricourt and Britain's Samuel Ingram.

Reigning champion Maria del Carmen Herrera from Spain defended the title after upsetting Mexican Lenia Ruvalcaba in women's under 70 kg class. Russian Tatiana Savostyanova and Sanneke Vermeulen from Netherlands captured the bronzes.

Source: Xinhua

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