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Judo at the 1980 Moskva Summer Games:

Men's Lightweight

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Host City: Moskva, Soviet Union
Venue(s): Palace of Sports, Central Lenin Stadium Area, Moskva
Date Started: July 30, 1980
Date Finished: July 30, 1980
Format: Two single-elimination pools, with winner of each pool advanced to the final. All judoka losing to the winner of each pool advanced to repêchage pools, with the winners of the repêchage pools earning bronze medals.

Gold: ITA Ezio Gamba
Silver: GBR Neil Adams
Bronze: MGL Ravdangiin Davaadalai
GDR Karl-Heinz Lehmann

Summary

Great Britain’s Neil Adams had won the European Championship at half-middleweight earlier in the year. But he was also bronze medalist in lightweight at the 1979 World Championships. When he dropped back to lightweight for the Olympics, he assumed the favorite’s role in the absence of Japanese World Champion, Kiyoto Katsuki. He was expected to be challenged by Italy’s Ezio Gamba, runner-up at the 1979 Worlds, who was a soldier in the Italian Army. Italy did not boycott Moskva, but their soldiers were forbidden to compete. So Gamba dropped out of the Army and travelled to Moskva on his own, the only Italian judo player in 1980. In the early rounds, Adams looked unbeatable, winning all his matches by ippon. Gamba was less impressive but came thru to the final. The final was extremely close, but at the 7-minute limit, the referee called for hantei and both judges raised the white flag, indicating Gamba, who won the gold medal.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Ezio Gamba 21 Italy ITA Gold
2 Neil Adams 21 Great Britain GBR Silver
3T Karl-Heinz Lehmann 23 East Germany GDR Bronze
3T Ravdangiin Davaadalai 26 Mongolia MGL Bronze
5T Edward Alkśnin 25 Poland POL
5T Christian Dyot 21 France FRA
7T Kim Byong-Gun 24 North Korea PRK
7T Michael Picken 25 Australia AUS
9 Fahad Al-Farhan 25 Kuwait KUW
10T Niokhor Diongue 18 Senegal SEN
10T Ricardo Tuero 21 Cuba CUB
12T Alonzo Henderson 24 Ireland IRL
12T Seppo Myllylä 21 Finland FIN
12T Halldór Guðbjörnsson 33 Iceland ISL
12T Tamaz Namgalauri 22 Soviet Union URS
12T Ronny Nilsson 27 Sweden SWE
12T Károly Molnár 26 Hungary HUN
12T Maurice Nkamden 28 Cameroon CMR
19T Roukoz Roukoz Lebanon LIB
19T Cornel Roman 28 Romania ROU
19T Johann Leo 22 Austria AUT
19T Paul Diop 21 Mali MLI
19T Anelson Vieira 26 Brazil BRA
19T George Hamaiko Zambia ZAM
19T Djillali Ben Brahim 27 Algeria ALG
19T Abdoulaye Diallo 29 Guinea GUI
19T Manuel Chavez Costa Rica CRC
19T Neofitos Aresti 22 Cyprus CYP
19T Issam Tombakji 19 Syria SYR
19T Vojo Vujević 25 Yugoslavia YUG