London 2012

Three in a row for Icho

Veteran Obara rewarded after coming out of retirement

Last Updated: 08/08/12 9:17pm

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Kaori Icho beat Jing Ruixue to claim her third successive Olympic gold and complete a clean sweep for Japan on the first night of women's wrestling at London 2012.

Icho became the only woman wrestler to triumph in Athens, Beijing and London after she outclassed her Chinese opponent to record a straightforward 3-0, 2-0 win in the -63kg category final.

Icho's victory came barely an hour after Hitomi Obara came from behind to register a hard-fought win over Azerbaijan's Mariya Stadnyk in the -48kg category.

Obara defeated the Azerbaijani 0-4 1-0 2-0 in a thrilling fight played out in front of a raucous Japanese following at the ExCeL.


The 31-year-old had retired twice from the sport after failing to make Japan's Olympic team at the last two Games but opted to return.

Stadnyk looked set to cause a huge upset when she strolled to victory in the first period, but the Japanese used all her experience to get behind her opponent and win the second before pushing her opponent off the mat in the third.

Clarissa Chun came through the repechage to win bronze - the United States' first wrestling medal of the Olympics.

The division's other bronze went to 2008 champion Carol Huynh of Canada after she beat Senegal's Isabelle Sambou in the second repechage final.

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