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Sunday, August 24, 2008

Iranian veteran Hadi Saei wins men's 80kg class taekwondo event

Iranian taekwondo player Hadi Saei clinched his second Olympic taekwondo gold on Friday, beating Mauro Sarmiento of Italy 6-4 in the men's 80kg category.

"I'm very happy for the Iranian people and my medal belongs to the soul of my father and two brothers," he said.

Saei, who won the 68kg class at Athens Games, said this match was a real challenge because he was lighter than his opponent.

Sarmiento dominated the first round with a 4-2 by a series of attacks, inluding an axe kick to Saei's head. However, 32-year-old Saei remained clear-minded. He just moved and waited.

When the opponent made mistakes during continuous attacks, Saei successfully threw two roundhouse kicks to Sarmiento's left side and drew the match into a 4-4 tie. He attcked first in round 3, scored his fifth and sixth point.

Sarmiento raised Saei's hand to congratulate the veteran. He was excited with the silver.

"Of course I would have liked to win the final, but I had a very strong opponent," Sarmiento said.

China's Zhu Guo won the bronze after an intense repechage match with British player Aaron Cook, beating Cook 4-1 to become the first Chinese male taekwondo player to win a medal at Olympics.

Zhu said his South Korean coach helped him a lot.

"During the contest I kept thinking I must win. I am not only representing myself, but I am also representing China and our men's Taekwondo team," he said.


Courtesy : www.news.xinhuanet.com

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