0204 GMT August 18, 2022
Iranian girls got off to a flying start at the Sofia 2022 World Taekwondo Junior Championships, leaving the country on course for a second team championship in the Bulgarian capital.
Sogand Shiri and Parnia Salmani collected a gold and a silver in two girls’ weight classes on Tuesday – two days after Iran claimed the girls’ title in the cadet competitions.
A tight -42kg final saw Shiri edge Turkey’s Hayrunnia Gurbuz in straight rounds and clinch the ultimate prize.
The first round finished 7-7 but the Iranian was handed the victory thanks to the manner in which she landed her points.
There was also little to separate the two in the second round, and with the score tied at 11-11 with 45 seconds left on the clock, it was Shiri who eventually came out on top.
South Korean Jung So-yeon – beaten by Shiri in the semifinals – and Gulshanoy Ismoilova of Uzbekistan shared the third podium.
Iran’s Parnia Salmani (2nd L) poses on the podium with her -44kg silver at the World Taekwondo Junior Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria, on August 2, 2022.
Salmani started the -44kg final against Thailand’s Natkamon Wassana on the front foot and won the first round 4-3.
The second round was a totally different story, as the Thai contestant eased to a 12-0 win, and then went on to round off the victory with a 15-8 scoreline in the third round.
Italy’s Giulia Galiero and Ching-yun Huang of the Chinese Taipei jointly won the bronze medals on the weight class.
Over 1,250 athletes, representing 90 countries and a refugee team, have been taking part in the cadet and junior event.