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Wrestling at the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games:

Men's Super-Heavyweight, Greco-Roman

Wrestling at the 1996 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games ▪ Next Summer Games

Events:
Phases:

Host City: Atlanta, United States
Venue(s): Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, Georgia
Date Started: July 21, 1996
Date Finished: July 22, 1996
Format: Single-elimination tournament with classification rounds for placements.

Gold: RUS Aleksandr Karelin
Silver: USA Matt Ghaffari
Bronze: MDA Sergei Mureico
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Summary

The Russian bear, Aleksandr Karelin, had not lost a match in nine years and had won the World Championships in 1989-91 and 1993-95, the European Championships from 1988-96, and was a two-time defending gold medalist. The only chink in his armor was that he had undergone shoulder surgery only a few months before the Atlanta Olympics. In the second round he was actually pushed to overtime by Moldovan Sergei Mureico, but Karelin won 2-0. Karelin had only once before needed to go to overtime in an international and that had been against American Matt Ghaffari at the 1993 Worlds. Ghaffari met Karelin in the Atlanta final, with Karelin scoring one point at 1:51, and that was all there was, as neither could score again, Karelin winning his third consecutive gold, 1-0. Karelin would continue to dominate the class, but at Sydney in 2000 he lost in the final to American Rulon Gardner, in what is considered one of the biggest upsets in Olympic history in any sport.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal CP TP
1 Aleksandr Karelin 28 Russia RUS Gold
2 Matt Ghaffari 34 United States USA Silver
3 Sergei Mureico 26 Moldova MDA Bronze
4 Petro Kotok 31 Ukraine UKR
5 Panagiotis Poikilidis 31 Greece GRE
6 René Schiekel 29 Germany GER
7 Tomas Johansson 34 Sweden SWE
8 Kenichi Suzuki 27 Japan JPN
9 Raoul Dgvoreli 31 Tajikistan TJK 6 6
10 Shermukhammad Kuziyev 25 Uzbekistan UZB 5 8
11 Omrane Ayari 24 Tunisia TUN 4 7
12 György Kékes 30 Hungary HUN 3 3
13 Yogi Johl 26 Canada CAN 3 3
14 Juha Ahokas 26 Finland FIN 3 2
15 Helger Hallik 23 Estonia EST 3 0
16 Gheorghe Amariei 23 Romania ROU 2 2
17 Rashid Bel Aziz 28 Morocco MAR 1 2
18 Guillermo Díaz 31 Mexico MEX 1 2
19 Liu Guoke 24 China CHN 1 1