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S Korea, China split wrestling golds of day at Doha Asiad
11/12/2006 10:04

Jiao Huafeng ended China's 16-year gold drought in the Asiad wrestling by claiming the Greco-Roman 55kg title as South Koreans swept the other three titles at the 15th Asian Games in Doha yesterday.

Kim Gwang Seok won the Greco-Roman 120kg final to finish a three-gold triumph for South Korea after his teammates Kim Min Chui and Kim Jung Sub collected one each from 66kg and 84kg classes respectively.

China has waited for its first Asiad gold since 1990 when it clinched two golds at home in the Beijing Asiad.

The 25-year-old Jiao beat Amiri Jasem from Iran in the final by a one-point advantage as he rallied from one round down (2-3) to win the decisive round 5-3.

"I'm really happy to win a gold here. Ten years, I have striven after it for 10 years. It's my best result so far and first gold in Asia," said Jiao, who beat Kazakhstan's Usupjanov Rinat 3-1 to reach the final this morning.

Sheng Zetian, head coach of the Chinese wrestling team, said it's a gold they dreamed of for 16 years.

"In the Greco-Roman lightweight categories like 55kg, Asian wrestlers stand up to lead the world. So it's really hard to win a gold here," said Sheng. "The gold gives more confidence for the Chinese wrestlers to run for a historical Olympic gold in Greco-Roman event."

South Korean coach Park Myoung Suk said he was very satisfied with his players' performance.

"We set a target of four to five gold medals before we came to Doha," said Park. "I'm very glad that we have reached it on the second day of the wrestling competitions."

"It's not easy to win the three finals as our rivals of Iran and Kazakstan are very strong. I think confidence is the key for our victories," said he.

Kim Gwang Seok beat Ghesmatiazar Sharbaiani Mehdi of Iran to win the 120kg final after the bronze medals went to Liu Deli of China and Ibragimov Nurbek of Kazakhstan.

South Korean Kim Jung Sub overpowered Abutabeekh Yahia of Jordan to win the 84kg final after Kim Min Chui beat Ruzikulov Rawshan of Uzbekistan to win the 66kg event.

Xinhua News