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Bronze slips through Chov Sotheara’s grasp

Bronze slips through Chov Sotheara’s grasp

Cambodia’s 27-year-old wrestler Chov Sotheara fell foul to the guiles of South Korea’s Kim Hyungjoo in their women’s 48kg freestyle bronze medal playoff at the Guangzhou Asian Games yesterday.

The pair produced a tense grip and grime contest before Sotheara began to feel the pinch under her Korean rival’s superior technique.

A technical points score of 5-0 in favour of Kim saw her opponent become the second Cambodian contender to be denied a medal when victory would’ve guaranteed bronze. Sorn Davin was shut out in her women’s taekwondo quarterfinal last Saturday.

In her first bout yesterday at the Guangdong Gymnasium, Chov Sotheara had been in sparkling form when she crossed paths with Jambora Maribel of the Philippines. After snatching a four-technical points lead in the first two periods, it was evident Sotheara had done enough to advance.

In the quarterfinals, she came a cropper against Vietnam’s Nguyen Thi Lua, but gained another shot at the bronze medal after winning her repechage match 3-1 over Thailand’s Tho-Kaew Sriprapa.

The women’s 48kg freestyle event was won by So Sim Hyang of North Korea, who beat Nguyen Thi Lua in the final yesterday.

Cambodia’s last chance of a wrestling success in Guangzhou now lies in the hands of Try Sothavy who faces Mio Nishimaki of Japan in a women’s 63kg freestyle last 16 bout scheduled for this morning.

Also in action today is Hem Bunting, who will attempt to grab a medal in the men’s 10,000m race. The popular Cambodian distance runner is also slated to compete in tomorrow’s marathon event on the last day of the Asian Games in Guangzhou.

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