China's Chen Zhong delivered Chinese delegation a perfect happy
ending Sunday, winning its 32nd and final gold at the Athens Games
in defending her Olympic title in taekwondo women's over 67kg
Chen, in Athens, repeated her feat of bringing one more gold to
the glory of the sports powerhouse on the final day at Sydney
2000when she made history by claiming the delegation's first ever
Olympic taekwondo gold.
Capping four days of the Olympic taekwondo competitions, Moon
Dab Sung of South Korea Sunday clinched the gold in men's over 80kg
category in Athens after knocking out Alexandros Nikolaidis of
Greece with one minute left in the first round.
In the women's final, the 21-year-old Chen beat Myriam Baverel
of France 12-5. Baverel, a 23-year-old German language teacher,
finished second in the middle weight 67-72kg at the World
Championships 2003, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.
"I'm delighted to win this gold," an exciting Chen told
reporters. "I've invested much more effort into winning this
consecutive title at Olympics."
Chen was injured on foot in the third round of the final and
tumbled on the platform at one point.
"That (injury) didn't have much effects on my performances,"
Chen said. "I held on to win the match."
The bronze went to Adriana Carmona of Venezuela in beating
Natalia Silva of Brazil 7-4.
"I've worked very very hard for this medal and I spend a lot of
time training," Carmona said. "This medal is for Venezuela and my
In the final, Chen employed a tactic of striking later to expand
her winning turf, scoring two points in round one, four points in
round two and six in three.
She waved the Chinese national flag to the cheering spectators
in the Sports Pavilion, the Olympic competition venue, after
hugging her coach, Chen Liren, in exaltation.
Earlier the day, Chen kept her winning run by defeating Silva of
Brazil 8-5 in semifinal and Adriana Carmona of Venezuela 7-5 in
During the semifinal, Chen, who earned her Olympic gold in the
same category in Sydney, fought a close round one but prevailed in
round two and three, scoring one points, four points and three
At one point in round three, the 30-year-old Silva struck Chen's
head and earned a much coveted two points. But Chen's later strong
showing proved that was only a temporary surprise.
In the quarterfinal, Chen kept a steady pace throughout the
three rounds and prevailed, scoring two points in round one, two
points in round two and four in three.
But she had one point deducted after receiving two kyong-gos
Chen defeated Yoriko Okamoto of Japan 7-5 to progress into the
quarterfinal earlier Sunday.
In the men's over 80kg final, with just 50.6 seconds to go in
the first round, Moon quickly kicked Nikolaidis with a roundhouse
to the body after the two had tactically moved around without
scoring until the kick from Moon.
"I'm happy that I managed to beat an opponent like Nikolaidis in
front of such a passionate crowd," Moon told reporters.
"The moment when my opponent was not so focused on his defense,
since he was attacking, was when I made the crucial blow," he
When Nikolaidis came to his senses, he was overcome with what
"It was a tough moment when he made the kick," said Nikolaidis.
"Unfortunately I didn't block him."
"I'm disappointed because I knew all Greeks wanted me to win
this gold medal," he added. "I trained hard for it, so right now, I
cannot be happy with the silver medal."
The bronze went to Pascal Gentil of France, who defeated Ibrahim
Kamal of Jordan 6-2.
"The bronze medal wasn't exactly what I wanted from this
tournament," Gentil said. "But it is still an Olympic medal and
it's very important."
(Xinhua News Agency August 30, 2004)