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Kim Lhim Hwan wins gold U66kg at tough day in Samsun

1 Apr 2016 20:05

 by Mark Pickering - IJF    IJF Media Team / International Judo Federation
20160206_Paris_IJF_KIM, Limhwan (KOR) - HAMAD, Sulaiman (KSA)

Two Asian athletes qualified for the final U66kg at the Grand Prix of Samsun. A tremendous fight between the 2015 Paris Grand Slam bronze medallist Dovdon Altansukh of Mongolia and Kim Lim-Hwan of Korea.

Both athletes spent almost the first minute of the final on the ground, as Dovdon tried to immobilise Kim, but the Korean could finally escape from the trap set up by Dovdon, but not without some judogi marks on his face after an impressive defense. The next four minutes were equally dominated by Kim and Dovdon, who couldn’t score and the two competitors entered the golden score still with an empty scoreboard. The first ko-uchi-gari for Kim was very close to scoring as well as another confused action one minute later, but still nobody could say who the winner would be. After more than two minutes in the golden score, it is finally a shido given to Dovdon that gave the victory to Kim and the first gold medal on the occasion of a Grand Prix for 23 year old athlete.

The first bronze medal contest opposed, Gevorg Khachatrian (UKR) and Azamat Mukanov (KAZ), neither of them being among the favourites of the category. After a first unfruitful attack with a seoi-nage on one hand, Khachatrian scored a first yuko again with a seoi nage technique. Despite the shidos that were distributed on both sides until the end of the contest, it is an exhausted Khachatrian who finally won his first Grand Prix medal.

The same scenario happened in the second bronze medal fights, as Ferdinand Karapetian (ARM) and Yakub Shamilov (RUS), were not among the top seeded competitors today in Samsun. Thus it was a difficult day for those who came here to gain the important points that were needed to secure a place on the top of the category. The beginning of the fight looked quite balanced when Shamilov caught Karapetian’s leg, which is forbidden and immediately got disqualified. Ferdinand Karapetian won his first Grand Prix medal, his best result so far was a seventh place at the 2015 Tashkent Grand Prix.

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