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Taymazov successfully defends wrestling gold medal

Beijing, China (Sports Network) - Uzbekistan's Artur Taymazov successfully defended his gold medal in the 120kg class on the final day of freestyle wrestling at the Olympics.

Taymazov, also a silver medalist in 2000, beat Russian Bakhtiyar Akhmedov on points, 4-0, to win the gold again. David Musulbes, who won gold for Slovakia in 2000, shared the bronze medal with Darid Mutalimov of Kazakhstan.

The 96kg category was won by Shirvani Muradov of Russia, a 2-0 victory over Kazakhstan's Talmuraz Tigiyev. George Gogshelidze of Georgia and Khetag Gazyumov of Azerbaijan.

It was a stirring win for Muradov, who beat Gogshelidze in a tense match, especially with the international hostilities between Russia and Georgia.

"Winning five bouts in a short time is very difficult," said Muradov. "These bouts are 15-20 minutes apart. With such little time to rest, it is very difficult to recompose yourself."

The 84kg class was won by Georgian Revazi Mindorashvili, 9-3, on points against Yusup Abdusalomov of Cuba. Taras Danko of the Ukraine and Russian Georgy Ketoev shared the bronze.

As for the Americans on Thursday, Steve Mocco was going after a bronze medal after losing to Akhmedov, 3-1, on points. Mocco, of North Bergen, NJ, though lost to Fardin Masoumi of Iran in the bronze medal bracket.

"I came here to wrestle," said Mocco. "I was well-coached and well-prepared. I'd like to thank my family, my coaches and my friends for being here for me. I have nothing to talk about. I didn't succeed."

Andy Hrovat lost to Cuba's Reineris Salas in the round of 16 of the 84kg class.

American Daniel Cormier had to withdraw from the 96 kg class Thursday morning due to dehydration.

Russia will leave the Olympics winning six of 18 possible gold medals in wrestling. That includes Greco-Roman and freestyle events.

08/21 11:14:21 ET

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