Stefanek Bags First Gold for Serbia, Aleksanyan Grabs First in 20 Years for Armenia

Davor Stefanek won the first Olympic Games gold medal in wrestling for Serbia and Artur Aleksanyan won gold for Armenia.

Davor STEFANEK (SRB) won the first Olympic Games gold medal in wrestling for Serbia on Tuesday and Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) upgraded from bronze to gold for Armenia as the Greco-Roman events came to a close at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Stefanek, the 2014 world champion, hammered out a 1-1 victory over Migran ARUTYUNYAN (ARM) in the 66kg final at Carioca Arena 2 for the historic medal, while Aleksanyan wrapped up Yasmany LUGO CABRERA (CUB) for a 3-0 win in the Greco-Roman finale at 98kg.

Aleksanyan, who won a bronze medal four years ago in London, grabbed the second gold medal for Armenia as an independent nation and the first in 20 years since Armen NAZARIAN (ARM) won the 52kg crown at Atlanta 1996.

In the 98kg final, Aleksanyan appeared tentative at the opening but managed to squeeze out a gut wrench from par terre for a 2-0 lead at the break. He added a lift from par terre in the second for the margin of victory over Lugo Cabrera.

Meanwhile, Stefanek added that he was "very happy" to win his first medal in three trips to the Olympic Games, adding that the medal was also the first gold medal for a Serbian wrestler since Los Angeles 1984, when Vlado LISJAK (YUG) won the 68kg title as part of Yugoslavia.

In the 66kg final, Arutyunyan opened the scoring with an arm control to step out midway through the first period, but was penalized for passivity in the second period, giving Stefanek the tie-break advantage with the last point.

Earlier, in the day, Stefanek dropped reigning world champion Frank STAEBLER (GER) with a front headlock for four points and a 6-2 in the quarterfinal. He also cranked 2014 junior world champ Shmagi BOLKVADZE (GEO) over a fall in the semifinals.

Arutyunyan defeated 2013 world champion RYU Han-Soo (KOR) in the quarterfinals and Las Vegas world champion Rasul CHUNAYEV (AZE) on his way to the final.

In the bronze medal matches, Chunayev locked in a chest-high grip and rolled up an 8-0 technical fall over Ryu at 2:20, while 2014 junior world champ Shmagi BOLKVADZE (GEO) received a point for a second passivity call against Tomohiro INOUE (JPN) and made it stand for a 1-0 win.

In the bronze medal bouts at 98kg, two-time world bronze medalist Cenk ILDEM (TUR) received two points when Alin ALEXUC-CIURARIU (ROU) refused to open up on defense and then stepped over a gut wrench attempt by Alexuc-Ciurariu for a 4-0 win.

London 2012 gold medalist Ghasem REZAEI (IRI) spotted Fredrik SCHOEN (SWE) a 4-0 lead in the first period, but roared back with back-to-back gut wrenches for a 4-4 win with the last points.

In the morning session, Lugo Cabrera fashioned a 4-0 decision over Rezaei in the quarterfinals and gave Cuba an entry in the gold medal finals for a third night in a row.

Also, Stefanik utilized a tight front headlock and dump to upset reigning world champion Frank STAEBLER (GER), 6-2, in the quarterfinals.

Ryu defeated London 2012 silver medalist Tamas LORINCZ (HUN), 4-2, in the round or 16 while Chunayev won, 3-2, over Beijing 2008 gold medalist Islambek ALBIEV (RUS) with the help of a two-point leg penalty.


Greco-Roman 66kg (18 entries)

Gold Medal Final

Davor STEFANEK df. Migran ARUTYUNYAN (ARM), 1-1

Bronze Medal Finals

Shmagi BOLKVADZE (GEO) df. Tomohiro INOUE (JPN), 1-0

Rasul CHUNAYEV (AZE) df. RYU Han-Soo (KOR) by TF, 8-0


Davor STEFANEK df. Shmagi BOLKVADZE (GEO) by Fall, 1:26 (7-0)

Migran ARUTYUNYAN (ARM) df. Rasul CHUNAYEV (AZE), 4-1


Tomohiro INOUE (JPN) df. Frank STAEBLER (GER), 2-2

RYU Han-Soo (KOR) df. Adham KAHK (EGY), 5-0

Greco-Roman 98kg (19 entries)

Gold Medal Final

Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) df. Yasmany LUGO CABRERA (CUB), 3-0

Bronze Medal Finals


Ghasem REZAEI (IRI) v Fredrik SCHOEN (SWE)


Artur ALEKSANYAN (ARM) df. Cenk ILDEM (TUR) by TF, 9-0, 2:33

Yasmany LUGO CABRERA (CUB) df. Fredrik SCHOEN (SWE), 2-0



Ghasem REZAEI (IRI) df. XIAO Di (CHN), 7-0

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Tim Foley


Gordon Templeman


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