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Georgia’s Khinchegashvili takes gold in 57 kg freestyle wrestling

Rio Olympics Wrestling Men

Georgia’s Vladimer Khinchegashvili celebrates after defeating Japan’s Rei Higuchi to win the gold in the men’s wrestling freestyle 57-kg competition at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)


Georgia won its second gold and third overall wrestling medal in Rio Friday, as Vladimer Khinchegashvili won the 57 kg freestyle competition.

Khinchegashvili, who hasn’t lost since the final of the 2014 World Championships, defeated Japan’s Rei Higuchi in the gold medal match. After winning each of his first three matches by identical scores of 3-1, Khinchegashvili took the final by a 4-3 score. Khinchegasvili took silver in the 55 kg division in London four years ago. And with the Higuchi being just 20 years of age, there’s a good chance that we haven’t heard the last from the silver medalist.

Haji Aliyev of Azerbaijan and Hassan Rahimi took bronze in the division, with Aliyev’s medal being Azerbaijan’s fifth in wrestling in these Olympics. Iran has won three wrestling medals in Rio, two coming in Greco-Roman, with all three being bronze.

American Daniel Dennis was eliminated in the quarterfinal round, as he lost to Bulgaria’s Vladimir Dubov.