Chelyabinsk 2015 – Day 5: Korea rises count to 3 golds as Great Britain clinches 1st title
Korea took two titles through Kim and Lim and Great Britain won its first gold medal of the event in the fifth day of action at Chelyabinsk 2015 World Championships. Kim proved to be the clear dominant of the Men’s -54 kg category, as well as Lim seemed to control every single opponent in the Women’s -53 kg, while Walkden managed to beat the double world champion Epangue to climb to the top of the Women’s +73 kg podium. France (Epangue), Chinese Taipei (Huang) and Russia (Denisov) were awarded with the 3 silvers of the day, while Russia (Ivanova), Croatia (Zaninovic), Turkey (Kus), Greece (Asprogeraka), Thailand (Sawekwiharee) and Brazil (Teixeira) had to content themselves with the bronze.
Women’s +73 kg
1 – Bianca Walkden (GBR)
2 – Gwladys Epangue (FRA)
3 – Olga Ivanova (RUS)
3 – Nafia Kus (TUR)
Women’s -53 kg
1 – Geun-byeol Lim (KOR)
2 – Yun-Wen Huang (TPE)
3 – Ana Zaninovic (CRO)
3 – Andriana Asprogeraka (GRE)
Men’s -54 kg
1 – Tae-hun Kim (KOR)
2 – Stanislav Denisov (RUS)
3 – Ramnarong Sawekwiharee (THA)
3 – Venilton Teixeira (BRA)
Women’s -53 kg
Yun-Wen Huang (TPE) dominated the 6 minutes of the opening match of the session against Ana Zaninovic (CRO), who couldn’t handle the attacks from the world number 1. Although the fight seemed to be close in the first period, which finished 0-0, it wasn’t, as Huang connected 3 consecutive head kicks in the second round to take a 9-2 lead. In the final period, she collected 3 more points, including a spectacular turnaround body kick, rising her score to 12 and leaving Zaninovic with only 4.
Huang’s opponent in the final ended up being Geun-byeol Lim (KOR), who comfortably got rid of Andriana Asprogeraka (GRE) by 7-1. The Korean took an early 3-0 thanks to 3 consecutive body kicks and gave no chance for a comeback from the Greek representative. In the second round, Lim landed her right foot on Asprogeraka’s head and extended her advantage to 7-0, which almost finished the fight. The European contender managed to score 1 point only in the 3 final minutes and left the scoreboard with the final 7-1.
Bianca Walkden (GBR) took the first place in the Women’s +73 kg final after clearly defeating the Turkish Nafia Kus (TUR) by 10-3. Kus was the athlete who inaugurated the scoreboard through a body kick, but Walkden reacted spectacularly by achieving no less than 10 consecutive points in the next 3 minutes, including a double head kick, a single head kick and a body kick. The British representative took a 10-1 lead which she managed easily to finish ahead by 10-3 after the 6 minutes.
In the second semi-final, the double world champion Gwladys Epangue (FRA) proved to be too powerful for the local idol and world champion in Puebla two years ago Olga Ivanova (RUS), defeating her by 8-5. Epangue connected a total of 8 unstoppable body kicks to take a 8-1 lead, reducing Ivanova’s chances to score until the last minute of the fight, whe the Russian was finally able to rise her score from 1 to 5.
Men’s -54 kg
Stanislav Denisov (RUS) earned the chance to take the first gold for Russia after defeating Venilton Teixeira (BRA) in a spectacular battle which finished 20-17 for the local hero. Teixeira managed to dominate the fight in different moments and even led by 6-1, but Denisov never gave up. That led the combat into a constant change of lead which turned the Traktor Arena into a noise machine. A truly enjoyable fight from both contenders.
World number 2 Tae-hun Kim (KOR) confirmed his current status of unbeatable by defeating an extremely tough opponent as Ramnarong Sawekwiharee (THA), super fast and always looking to punish his rivals. Kim won 6-2, but it wasn’t until the very last second that he was able to breathe. The Thai even had a 2-0 lead at the beginning of the clash, but wasn’t able to score since then even though he appealed for a head kick which was finally disallowed by the referees.
Women’s -53 kg
17-year old Geun-byeol Lim (KOR) became new Women’s -53 kg world champion after no less than defeating the current number 1 in the WTF ranking, Chinese Taipei Yun-wen Huang, by 10-5. Lim led throughout the whole final, finishing 5-2 up when the second period ended and scoring 5 more points in the final round. She was punished with some penalties at the end of the match as she was trying to save the advantage she had obtained, which rose Huang’s score to 5. A well deserved gold medal for the Korean, who wasn’t one of the favourites in the draw, and a major upset for Huang, who was really hoping to lift the title as the reigning world number 1 she is.
Women’s +73 kg
Reiging European champion Bianca Walkden (GBR) confirmed herself as the heavy female athlete of the moment after defeating the double world champion Gwladys Epangue (FRA) by 4-2 thanks to a spectacular comeback in the last seconds of the fight. Walkden was 2-0 down with 10 seconds left, when she managed to find Epangue’s head for the first time to turn the score around and taste the golden glory in Chelyabinsk.
Men’s -54 kg
Tae-hun Kim, current world number 2 in the world, ended with the Russian dream of clinching a gold medal on saturday as the knocked Stanislav Denisov 14-7 in the big final of the Men’s -54 kg division. The first period finished without points on the scoreboard as both athletes were really efective when defending from each other’s attacks. But in the second round, Kim connected 3 body kicks, including one turnaround one, to take a 5-0 lead which was eventually the key of the match. In the last round, the local hope tried his best encouraged by the crowd support, but he was only able to lead the fight into a hitting exchange.
Day session: Men’s -87 and +87 kg and Women’s -73 kg
Gabon, Ivory Coast, Uzbekistan, Cuba, Russia, Azerbaijan, Korea, USA, China and Croatia secured a medal after the day session of Chelyabinsk 2015 Day 5 was completed.
Ten countries managed to place one athlete each, while Uzbekistan and Cuba got two, into the Semi-finals of the Women’s -73 and Men’s -87 and +87 kg categories, which will all be resolved during tomorrow’s evening session.
The competitors who will fight for the gold medals on the sixth day of action will be:
Men’s -87 kg
– Jasur Baykuziyev (UZB)
– Vladislav Larin (RUS)
– Radik Isaev (AZE)
– Rafael Castillo (CUB)
World number 1 Baykuziyev will face local hope Larin for a place in the big final, as Isaev and Castillo will fight each other for the other. The Uzbek star showed his dominance in the division after successfuly beating Golubovic (SRB), Molfetta (ITA) and by a comfortable point difference (8-2, and 9-5), being Lopez (MEX) his only tough challenge so far (3-2), while Larin had to defeat Telikostoglou (GRE), Ma (CHN), and Ros (ESP) to make his way to the Semis. On the other side of the draw, Isaev got rid of Ali (BAN), Chang (TPE) and N’Diaye (FRA), while Castillo left Elhatri (NOR), Yarmak (BLR) and Trabelsi (TUN) on his way to certify a medal in the category.
Women’s -73 kg
– Hyeri Oh (KOR)
– Jackie Galloway (USA)
– Shuyin Zheng (CHN)
– Iva Rados (CRO)
Oh clearly proved to be strongest athlete of the draw so far after beating Galacho (BRA), Ikonen (SWE) and world number 1 Mandic (SRB), securing the fifth medal for Korea in the event; Galloway showed her power over Skaar (NOR), Akhlaghi (IRI) and Gurskaia (RUS); Zheng beat Weekes (PUR), Oogink (NED) Kone (USA) and Espinoza (MEX); while Rados superb performance on thursday left Men (AUS), Tedeeva (AZE) and Krzemieniecka (POL) behind her.
Men’s +87 kg
– Anthony Obame (GAB)
– Firmin Zokou (CIV)
– Robelis Despaigne (CUB)
– Dmitriy Shokin (UZB)
Gabonese idol and reigning world champion Obame had no problems to secure another medal for his country as he easily won today’s three fights over Shelest (UKR), El Yazidi (FRA) and Lambdin (USA). Obame will face the surprise of the draw, another African, Zokou (CIV), who on saturday defeated Sango (MOZ) by 41-2, Cho (GBR) by 7-6, Cezario Felix (BRA) and Jo (KOR), in tomorrow’s semis. The other semi will put Despaigne (CUB) and Shokin (UZB) face to face. The Cuban got rid of Vassily (AUS), Issoufou (NIG), Mardani (IRI) and Chukwumerije (NGR), while Shokin left Grant (JAM), Basile (ITA) and Wodzich (GER) on his way to the medals.
Tomorrow will be the day for the Semi-finals and Finals of these three divisions and for the beginning of the Women’s -57 kg and Men’s -63 kg categories, which will complete their draw until the Semi-final round.
Pau Aguilar, Chelyabinsk