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Heavyweight legends fight for gold in Hong Kong
2 Dec 2018 12:50
China captured four gold medals at the Hong Kong Open, and Japan and Korea both claimed two titles - maybe two-and-a-half as Kaihan Takagi won gold in his U100kg weight class. Takagi, born in Australia and previously representing Japan, now claims a gold medal for Australia. The heayvweight category featured some legendary names in the field.
The Chinese women dominated the tournament with four titles. On Sunday Sun Xiaoqjan won gold U70kg and Yanan Yiang defeated her compatriot Shiyan Xu in the heavyweight final.
Ito Nami of Japan captured the gold medal U78kg. The quality of the men’s tournament could be considered higher with 128 men. With participants such as former Olympic Champion Naidan Tuvshinbayar and Korean super talent Kim Min-Jong, it can't be argued to be a weak tournament. It was the Korean who prevailed and claimed the victory in the final against Temuulen Battulga, also an upper-tier Mongolian. Top quality in Hong Kong. Naidan won the bronze medal after he lost to Asuan U21 Champion Kim to 18-year old Kim in the semifinal. Three Mongolians stood on the podium as Odkhuu captured the second bronze.
As mentioned, Kaihan Ozcicek-Takagi won the category U100kg in a field of 13 athletes. Japan also claimed a gold as Hideshi Okada won U90kg, but the Japanese team consisted of club athletes, not comparable to the usual top names in the World Tour. Korean Gwang-Hui Lee was the best among 21 men. He follows up Lee Young-Jun who won the event last year U81kg.
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Yuri Stepkin (RUS)