Kyrgyzstan joins Olympic medals table with wrestling silver and bronze

© AKIpress
© AKIpress

Tokyo, Japan, August 3, 2021: Kyrgyzstan have taken their time to join the medals table at Tokyo 2020 – but on Tuesday, August 3 they won a silver and a bronze on the same day.

Wrestling provided both medals – a silver for Akzhol Makhmudov in men’s Greco-Roman 77kg and a bronze for Meerim Zhumanazarova in women’s freestyle 68kg.

Makhmudov, 22, beat opponents from Tunisia, Azerbaijan and Armenia on Monday to reach the final the following day but went down 2-1 to Tamas Lorincz 2-1 in the gold medal bout.

His silver medal was the first Olympic medal for Kyrgyzstan since Beijing 2008 when the country won three medals.

Zhumanazarova, 21, took a bronze medal via the repechage system after losing in the quarter-finals on Monday.

The following day she bounced back to defeat Alice Manolova of Azerbaijan 4-1 in the first round of the repechage and claimed a bronze medal with a 10-1 victory over Mongolia's London 2012 bronze medalist and two-time world champion Battsetseg Soronzonbold.

Kyrgyzstan has now won six medals at the Olympic Games – two silver and four bronze. Five of the six medals have come from wrestling and one from judo, which was their first in the Olympics at Sydney 2000.

With the two wrestling medals on Tuesday, Kyrgyzstan climbed to joint 64th place in the medals standings.