Tokyo Olympics: Blessing Oborududu loses final in wrestling, wins Nigeria’s first silver

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Team Nigeria’s Blessing Oborududu on Tuesday won a silver medal in the women’s freestyle 68kg wrestling category.

She had guaranteed Nigeria a medal on Monday after beating Mongolia’s Battsetseg Soronzonbold to reach the final.

Although she lost the final to American world champion Stock Mensah Tamyra Marianna 4-1, the 32-year-old can be proud of her achievement after earning Nigeria’s second medal at the Tokyo games.

Oborududu, who began wrestling at St Jude’s Girls Secondary School in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, had been aiming to clinch gold in Tokyo.

But Mensah proved too strong.

Still, she emerged as Nigeria’s first-ever Olympics medalist in wrestling.

On her way to the final, Oborududu made light work of Elis Manolova in the round of 16, thrashing the Azerbaijani 13-2 via technical superiority, before securing a hard-fought 3-2 win against Meerim Zhumanazarova of Kyrgyzstan in the quarter-finals.

After a cagey opening moment in her semi-final bout against the 2015 World champion Soronzonbold, the energetic Oborududu burst into action, taking down the 31-year-old Mongolian thrice to eventually win the first round 7-0.

A late fightback saw Soronzonbold score two points, but Oborududu was never going to be denied a place in history as she ran out with a comfortable 7-2 win.

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