Judges award Islamic Republic of Iran's Sajan Ganjzadeh men's karate kumite +75kg gold after he is knocked out by Saudia Arabia's Tareg Hamedi in dramatic final
Islamic Republic of Iran’s Sajan Ganjzadeh has won the men’s karate kumite +75kg in dramatic fashion after being knocked out by Saudia Arabia’s Tareg Hamedi.
The 29-year-old, who had been trailing 4-1 in the bout, fell to ground after being knocked out with a kick from Hamedi. Medics rushed on to the mat to treat him and he was stretchered off at the Nippon Budokan, which is the spiritual home to the Japanese martial art, which is making its debut at Tokyo 2020.
Hamedi, 23, had come out fighting and had soon landed an Ippon and a Yuko before the incident happened. The judges later awarded Ganjzadeh, who is a former world champion, the gold medal by a Hansoku and the match ended with a 4-0 scoreline.
At a press conference later sitting alongside Hamedi, Ganjzadeh said: "I'm not feeling much I just have a lot of headache. The last thing I remember was that I was behind by scores and then that incident happened and I don't remember much after that, and what I remember was that in the medical room I woke up and I heard from the coach that I won the match. I'm very happy that I achieved this gold medal but I'm sad that it had to happen like this."
The last thing I remember was that I was behind by scores and then that incident happened. In the medical room I woke up and I heard from the coach that I won the match.
I'm very happy that I achieved this gold medal but I'm sad it had to happen like this."
Hamei, who took silver medal, also told reporters: "At first I thank God I don't have any objection to the decision of the referees. I think I played well."
On his way to the final Ganjzadeh, who was making his Olympic debut, beat Turkey’s Ugur Aktas 2-2 in the semifinal, who went on to take on of the two bronze medals. In the earlier rounds he also beat Canada’s Daniel Gaysinksy 2-1, USA’s Brian Irr 6-0, Croatia’s Ivan Kvesic 3-1 and his preliminary bout with Hamedi ended in a nil-all draw. The second bronze medal was awarded to Japan’s ARAGA Ryutaro who Hamedi had beaten 2-0 in the semifinal.