Cha's gold medal is South Korea's fourth of Games in taekwondo

Updated: August 23, 2008, 10:53 AM ET
Associated Press

BEIJING -- South Korea's Cha Dong-min won the men's over 80-kilogram class in taekwondo, bringing the fourth gold to his country in its native sport.

Cha fell behind when Alexandros Nikolaidis of Greece nailed him in Saturday's final with a head kick 15 seconds into the bout. But he came back with a body kick and a head shot of his own to take back the lead, and added another point to go 4-3 leading into the third round.

Nikolaidis then evened it at 4-4 with a body kick, but Cha scored with just 18 seconds left to claim the gold.

Winning the bronzes were Kazakhstan's Arman Chilmanov, who won when Cuba's Angel Matos was ruled the loser for taking too much injury time, and Nigeria's Chika Yagazie Chukwumerije.

After he was disqualified, Matos kicked the match referee in the head. He and his coach have been banned for life.

In the women's over 67-kilogram class, Mexico's Maria del Rosario Espinoza won the gold medal.

Espinoza, the 2007 world champion, easily defeated Norway's Nina Solheim on points after going ahead in the first round and never falling behind. The final score was 4-1.

Winning bronze were Britain's Sarah Stevenson, who defeated Egypt's Noha Abd Rabo 5-1, and Brazil's Natalia Falavigna, who outscored Sweden's Karolina Kedzierska 5-2.

Taekwondo awards two bronze medals in each weight class.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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