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Judo at the 1988 Seoul Summer Games:

Men's Half-Middleweight

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Host City: Seoul, South Korea
Venue(s): Jangchung Gymnastium, Seoul
Date Started: September 28, 1988
Date Finished: September 28, 1988
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: POL Waldemar Legień
Silver: FRG Frank Wieneke
Bronze: GDR Torsten Bréchôt
URS Bashir Varayev

Summary

There were several contenders with no clear favorite. Defending champion West German Frank Wieneke was back but had not won a major title since 1984. The Japanese World Champion Hirotaka Okada was expected to challenge for a medal. Also highly considered was Britain’s five-time European Champion Neil Adams, twice an Olympic silver medalist. Adams had come out of retirement to chase the one medal that had escaped him during his career. But the division was marked by upset after upset. Adams went out to East German, Torsten Bréchôt, who had been 1985 World runner-up when known as Torsten Oehmigen. Okada was defeated by Frenchman Pascal Tayot, a strong, muscular fighter with little technique. One pool final matched Wieneke against Bréchôt, with Wieneke closing it out with a koka with seven seconds remaining. The other pool final matched Russian Bashir Varayev, 1987 World runner-up, against Poland’s Waldemar Legień, the 1985 European silver medalist. Legień won by decision, but Varayev’s actions made everyone in the crowd know he did not agree with the result. Just after four minutes into the final, Legień dropped to his back to begin groundwork. Wieneke attacked, but Legień grabbed him and threw with seoi-nage for ippon to win the gold medal at 4:44. Legień would return in 1992 to win gold in the middleweight class.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Waldemar Legień 25 Poland POL Gold
2 Frank Wieneke 26 West Germany FRG Silver
3T Torsten Bréchôt 24 East Germany GDR Bronze
3T Bashir Varayev 24 Soviet Union URS Bronze
5T Kevin Doherty 29 Canada CAN
5T Pascal Tayot 23 France FRA
7T Gastón García 20 Argentina ARG
7T Vítorino González 24 Spain ESP
9T Walid Mohamed Hussain 27 Egypt EGY
9T Lars Adolfsson 22 Sweden SWE
11 Peter Reiter 28 Austria AUT
12T Rodnomyn Erkhembayar 28 Mongolia MGL
12T Jukka-Pekka Metsola 34 Finland FIN
14T Hirotaka Okada 21 Japan JPN
14T Neil Adams 29 Great Britain GBR
14T Hisham Al-Sharaf Rashad 28 Kuwait KUW
14T Temel Çakıroğlu 29 Turkey TUR
14T Patrick Matangi 21 Zimbabwe ZIM
14T Lam Lap Hing 30 Hong Kong HKG
20T Luis Ochoa 22 Colombia COL
20T Ricardo José Boy 24 Angola ANG
20T Filip Leščak 27 Yugoslavia YUG
20T John Baylon 22 Philippines PHI
20T Pedro Cristóvão 23 Portugal POR
20T Carlos Huttich 25 Mexico MEX
20T Mariano Aquino 19 Guam GUM
20T Jason Morris 21 United States USA
20T Luis Val 28 Australia AUS
20T Kilmar Campos 25 Venezuela VEN
20T Tsay Yow-Tayn 19 Chinese Taipei TPE
20T Magnus Büchel 28 Liechtenstein LIE
20T Aly Attyé 24 Senegal SEN
20T An Byeong-Geun 26 South Korea KOR
34T Olivier Schaffter 23 Switzerland SUI
34T James Kihara 29 Kenya KEN
34T Mamudu Adamu 27 Nigeria NGR
34T Fadi Saikali 19 Lebanon LIB
34T Károly Németh 30 Hungary HUN
34T Ezequiel Paraguassu 24 Brazil BRA
34T Johan Laats 21 Belgium BEL
34T Simione Kuruvoli 36 Fiji FIJ