Olympics: Kim and Zhao take first taekwondo golds, Thailand's Panipak takes bronze

Kim So Hui of South Korea celebrates winning the gold medal for Women's 49kg Taekwondo.
Kim So Hui of South Korea celebrates winning the gold medal for Women's 49kg Taekwondo.PHOTO: REUTERS
Zhao Shuai of China celebrates winning the Men's 58kg Taekwondo gold medal.
Zhao Shuai of China celebrates winning the Men's 58kg Taekwondo gold medal.PHOTO: REUTERS

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - Kim So-hui of South Korea and China's Zhao Shuai took the honours on the opening day of the Olympic taekwondo competition on Wednesday.

The 22-year-old Kim So-hui, a double world champion, narrowly beat European champion Tijana Bogdanovic of Serbia 7-6 to win the women's under-49kg gold medal.

Zhao's men's under-58kg final was almost as close before he edged Thailand's Tawin Hanprab 6-4 to secure the title.

Patimat Abakarova of Azerbaijan earned a rare women's medal for her country by taking bronze after beating Yasmina Aziez of France 7-2.

Thailand finished the day with two medals as Panipak Wongpattanakit, a former world champion, outclassed Itzel Manjarrez of Mexico 15-3 to win inside the distance for the other bronze.

Korea, normally the dominant force in taekwondo, also ended the day with two medals after two-time world champion Kim Tae-hun denied Mexico a bronze, beating Carlos Navarro 7-5 in the men's under-58kg division.

Luisito Pie of the Dominican Republic needed an extra period of sudden death to edge out Jesus Tortosa of Spain 6-5.