Updated: Saturday, 30 August 2014 01:38 | By Agence France-Presse

Iliadis triples up as Aguiar stuns Tcheumeo

Greek star Ilias Iliadis claimed his third world title in the under-90kg category in Chelyabinsk on Friday as Brazilian Mayra Aguiar and Colombian Yuri Alvear won gold in the women's under-78kg and under-70kg divisions respectively.


Iliadis triples up as Aguiar stuns Tcheumeo

Greece's Ilias Iliadis poses with his gold medal after the under 90 kg category competition on the podium at the IJF World Judo Championship in Chelyabinsk on August 29, 2013 - by Vasily Maximov

Iliadis is one of the biggest stars in judo due to his all-action attacking style and he didn't disappoint as he stormed to the gold medal, defeating Hungary's Krisztian Toth in the final with an osoto-makikomi (winding throw) for the maximum ippon.

"Oh that's so good to win a third world title and to sit here among the best athletes in the world. I don't consider myself as the best of the best but today was my lucky day," said Iliadis. 

"Most of the favourites were defeated and I took my chance. Of course, now I feel confident enough to run for another Olympics."

The Georgian-born Greek fighter, who changed his name from Jarji Zviadauri when he moved to Greece, first announced himself to the world as a precocious teenager when he won Olympic gold in Athens in 2004.

However, it was six years before he would win another major title as he took silver medals in the world championships in 2005 and 2007.

But he won back-to-back world titles in 2010 and 2011 and having taken bronze at the London Games has now earnt his third world crown, throwing Toth for ippon after just two minutes of the final.

Toth, 20, was one of the big surprises of the day, coming into the event as a virtual unknown.

"It's really a big surprise for me to be in the final and to be in the final with my idol, Ilias Iliadis. He's a role model for me," said Toth.

"I was probably not expected to medal at this level but it was my day and my dream came true."

European champion Varlam Liparteliani of Georgia and Russia's Kirill Voprosov took the bronze medals.

Colombian Alvear matched Iliadis's achievement by retaining her world title to add to the crown she first claimed in Rotterdam in 2009.

She made short work of Japan's Karen Nun Ira in the final, securing victory in one minute having stunned world number one Kim Polling of the Netherlands in the semi-finals.

"I am world champion again, for the third time. I am so happy. I know what it takes to be here on the top of the podium," said Alvear. 

Cuba's Onix Cortes Aldama and Katarzyna Klys of Poland completed the podium line-up.

Aguiar defeated Frenchwoman Audrey Tcheumeo, world champion in 2011 on home soil, in the under-78kg final.

Tcheumeo had been favourite to defeat Aguiar, three times previously a medallist, but the Brazilian struck with a low tai-otoshi (body drop) for the winning half-point waza-ari score.

"It is wonderful. I had an operation eight months ago. It is so hard to come back and to continue to train when you don't know if you can really recover," said Aguiar. 

Tcheumeo, who after winning bronze at the London Olympics had said she was going to take up tennis instead, took bronze in Rio last year so she completed the set with silver this time around.

Olympic champion Kayla Harrison of the US and Slovenia's Anamari Velensek won the bronze medals.

Japan still top the medals table but won just a single medal for the second day in a row and have now gone two days without a gold medal.

Georgia are just behind France in second but no-one other than Japan, with four, has claimed more than a single gold.

That should change on Saturday as the sport's premier star Teddy Riner of France goes for his seventh world title.

If he manages it, he would match the achievement of Japanese legend Ryoko Tani, who has a cartoon dedicated to her in her homeland and reigned supreme at under-48kg throughout the 1990s.

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