Tachimoto, Baker make it a double for Japan

Tachimoto, a four-time grand slam winner, was the only member of Japan's 14-strong team who was unseeded going into the competition.

Japan's Haruka Tachimoto (white) in action against Yuri Alvear of Colombia in the women's 70kg judo final.   -  Reuters

Mashu Baker, who won the men's 90kg gold.   -  Getty Images

Japan's Haruka Tachimoto won the women's under 70-kg judo gold medal for the sport's birthplace on Wednesday, defeating Colombia's Yuri Alvear who took silver.

Tachimoto, a four-time grand slam winner, was the only member of Japan's 14-strong team who was unseeded going into the competition. Earlier in the day, she beat top seed Kim Polling of the Netherlands.

Tachimoto left the competition with tears of happiness streaming down her face.

Germany's Vargas Koch and Britain's Sally Conway each took bronze. Alvear had previously won a bronze medal in the 2012 Olympics.

Later in the day top-seeded Mashu Baker won the men's under 90-kilogram to complete a night of double golds for Japan.

He defeated Georgia's Varlam Liparteliani, who took silver. China's Cheng Xunzhao and 2015 world champion Gwak Dong-han of South Korea each took bronze.

Japan has now won three gold medals in judo and five overall.

It was a disappointing day for France, a traditional judo champion. France, one of three countries fielding a full team of 14 judokas in Rio, was hoping for a repeat of its performance at the 2012 London Games when it claimed seven judo medals — tied for the most with Japan.



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