Eight-time world champion wrestler Hitomi Obara of Japan took her first Olympic medal with gold in the women’s 48 kg freestyle Wednesday, beating Azerbaijan’s Maria Stadnik 3-1 in the final.
Stadnik won bronze in Beijing four years ago but failed to upgrade to gold as Obara fought back from a slow start in a match that was a repeat of last year’s world championship final.
Stadnik won the first round in convincing style 4-0 before Obara scraped the second 1-0 and sealed her victory with a 2-0 win in the third round.
Canada’s Carol Huynh and US wrestler Clarissa Chun won bronze.
Huynh, the defending Olympic champion, won 3-0 on points against Senegal’s Isabelle Sambou, who was looking to win her country’s first medal since 1988.
Chun, the 2008 world champion, took her first Olympic medal by beating Ukraine’s Irina Merleni, who won gold in Athens in 2004 and bronze in Beijing four years later.