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Iranian Wrestler Beats Out Russian, American To Take Gold Medal In Rio


Iran's Hassan Aliazam Yazdanicharati celebrates after winning against Russia's Aniuar Geduev in their men's 74kg freestyle final match.

Iran's Hassan Aliazam Yazdanicharati celebrates after winning against Russia's Aniuar Geduev in their men's 74kg freestyle final match.

Iranian wrestler Hassan Yazdanicharati won gold in the men's 74-kilogram freestyle competition at the Rio Olympics after the defeat of heavily favored competitors from Russia and the United States.

Prior to the final match on August 19, American Jordan Burroughs, who won gold in London four years ago and is ranked first in the world, was stopped in his bid for another gold by world number two Aniuar Geduev of Russia, who took him down in a quarter-final bout.

Burroughs then also lost his chance at competing for bronze after losing to Uzbekistan's Bekzod Abdurakhmonov in a repechage round.

"I just feel like a disappointment, an embarrassment," said a tearful Burroughs afterwards. "Things that I wanted to do here, records I wanted to set, precedents that I wanted to be a part of, didn't happen."

Geduev went on to clinch silver after losing to Yazdanicharati, who said he knew the Russian wrestler would be hampered by an injury.

"I had a plan. I wanted to make him tired and suck his energy out to be able to win it in the last minute," Yazdanicharati said.

Azerbaijan's Jabrayil Hasanov and Turkey's Soner Demirtas won bronze medals.

Based on reporting by AP, Reuters, and dpa
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