0433 GMT January 23, 2020
Iran claimed the top spot at the opening round of competitions of the 2020 Karate 1 Series A in Santiago, Chile, collecting five gold medals and one bronze.
Following Iran in the overall standings, Turkey stood second with 12 medals – including four golds – with Italy grabbing two golds and a single bronze to finish third.
On Sunday, the final day of the three-day event in the South American capital, Rozita Alipour pulled off a huge upset by beating the Serbian world champion Jovana Prekovic in the women’s -61kg kumite final for Iran’s first gold of the season.
Hamideh Abbas-Ali doubled Iran’s gold tally in the women’s contests, defeating China’s Hanqi Cao in the +68kg final by Hantei, or referees decision, following a 0-0 draw.
Bahman Asgari opened the account for Iran in the men’s division, after he outpowered Brazil’s Bruno Texeira 5-1 in the -75kg kumite final.
Zabihollah Poursheib also finished his campaign on a high and overcame Turkey’s Ugur Aktas in the -84kg final before Sajjad Ganjzadeh brought the curtain down on a glittering tournament for Iran by claiming a 2-0 victory over Germany’s Jonathan Horne in the men’s +84kg final.
Also in the men’s +84kg class, Saleh Abazari beat American Brian Irr 4-1 and settled for a joint-bronze, alongside Gogita Arkania of Georgia.
The next round of the series will take place in Istanbul, Turkey, on June 19-21.