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Angry Swede Throws Down Medal, Quits


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By Douglas Hamilton

BEIJING, Aug 14 (Reuters) - Swedish wrestler Ara Abrahamian threw down his greco-roman bronze medal in protest on Thursday after his bid for Olympic gold was ended by a decision denounced by the Swedish coach as “politics.”

Abrahamian took the bronze from around his neck during the medal ceremony, stepped from the podium and dropped it in the middle of the wrestling mat then walked off.

“I don’t care about this medal. I wanted gold,” he said.

A bitter Abrahamian, silver medalist at Athens 2004 who had high hopes of top honors in the 84kg competition in Beijing, announced he was quitting the sport.

“This will be my last match. I wanted to take gold, so I consider this Olympics a failure,” he said.

The Swedish wrestler had to be restrained by teammates earlier when a row erupted with judges over the decision in a semifinal bout at the Chinese Agricultural University Gym with Andrea Minguzzi of Italy, who went on the take gold.

Abrahamian shouted at the referee and judges then went over to their seats to speak to them up close. He angrily threw off the restraining arm of a team official then turned and left.

Swedish fans booed loudly as the judges filed out of the arena. Abrahamian said nothing to waiting reporters but whacked an aluminium barricade with his fist as he left the hall.

Abrahamian later said he believed his loss to the eventual gold medalist Minguzzi was “totally unjustified.” The wrestler said his friends “called me just 20 minutes before the (bronze) competition, begging me to compete.”

“I decided that I had come this far and didn’t want to let them down, so I wrestled,” he said.

Swedish coach Leo Myllari said: “It’s all politics.”

http://sports.yahoo.com/olympics/news?slug...s&type=lgns

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Some of the best athletes out there never won Olympic gold. Look at Michelle Kwan. She "is" figure skating. Had she won gold in 1998/2002 I do not believe figure skating would be what it is today. Too bad we'll never think the same of Ara Abrahamian.

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Some of the best athletes out there never won Olympic gold. Look at Michelle Kwan. She "is" figure skating. Had she won gold in 1998/2002 I do not believe figure skating would be what it is today. Too bad we'll never think the same of Ara Abrahamian.

Welcome Sairrea B)

As someone posted over in the Wrestling thread (also with several comments by an angry Swede <_< ) had Sale and Pelletier + their coach done that do you honestly think the IOC would have given them the time of day or the ISU taken the challenge seriously?

As it is their class and dignity carried the day. Sale and Pelletier will always be remembered. This guy will be remembered like Tommy Smith and John Carlos in '68.

Who'd of thunk? Sweden gave us Abba and the Volvo. And meatballs.

Edited by LA84
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What you people than say, I say like the rest of the Nordic countries: WE SUPPORT YOU ARA ABRAHAMIAN!!!!!!!!! You show the greatest sportmanship!!!!!!!!!!!! You are a great sportman who is a HERO for you country! Sweden is proud of you!!!

And to all people in this board, look at the semi game before you judging Ara. If not you are NOT better than the corrupt judges!

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I expected her to reply with some biased comment, I was right.

My comment is not worser than they who attack Ara without seen the game!!!!!!! I expected a stupid comment from YOU! I tell my opinion and that´s it!

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I expected her to reply with some biased comment, I was right.

Indeed. I thought my analogy of Sale and Pelltier - two who were REALLY wronged - might have made him/her think.

Alas . . .

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What´s wrong with my comment then???? Explaination????

Pillan, just one word of advice. If you really want to get your point of view across, try first not posting in such large, colourful fonts. It really is like shouting and is just not good manners.

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Pillan, just one word of advice. If you really want to get your point of view across, try first not posting in such large, colourful fonts. It really is like shouting and is just not good manners.

Well, this is excatly the size and color I use in a another forum. In that forum it´s okay and many people do that. Why it isn´t okay in this one?????

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What you people than say, I say like the rest of the Nordic countries: WE SUPPORT YOU ARA ABRAHAMIAN!!!!!!!!! You show the greatest sportmanship!!!!!!!!!!!! You are a great sportman who is a HERO for you country! Sweden is proud of you!!!

And to all people in this board, look at the semi game before you judging Ara. If not you are NOT better than the corrupt judges!

SPORTSMANSHIP? do you even know what that means? what you athlete displayed is such a disgrace to your nation and yet you advocate such behavior? I think your the only Swede who will condone such atrocious behavior and let alone cheer it.

Does anyone remember Surya Bonaly at the 1994 World Figure Skating Championships? I thought that was low but this is the lowest.

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SPORTSMANSHIP? do you even know what that means? what you athlete displayed is such a disgrace to your nation and yet you advocate such behavior? I think your the only Swede who will condone such atrocious behavior and let alone cheer it.

Does anyone remember Surya Bonaly at the 1994 World Figure Skating Championships? I thought that was low but this is the lowest.

Like I said, watch the semi game before you make a comment! Finally, a sportman was brave enough to protest againts the corrupt FILA and their stupid rules! Yes Ara show a great sportmanship unlike other who only take the medal and is totally quiet. COWARD is the right word for them If you want to make changes then you must PROTEST not be quiet!

Since big letters are not accept in this forum, I will go back to the usual one! I must say this forum is totallt boring. In a another forum all people use differnt colors and sizes . It´s funny and all people has a own sign to post their messages! BORING FORUM. People here are very hysterical if they are so angry about a size on the letters! Civilized?? OH NOOO!

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I must say this forum is totallt boring. In a another forum all people use differnt colors and sizes . It´s funny and all people has a own sign to post their messages! BORING FORUM. People here are very hysterical if they are so angry about a size on the letters! Civilized?? OH NOOO!

Well, if you find it boring - leave.

We here revere people like Peletiere and Sale who showed what good sportsmanship is. We do not appreciate people like the '72 basketball team, Tommy Smith, Juan Carlos and now, this obscure Swede wrestler in showing the proper Olympic spirit.

And since I am North American, I can say that since I am a part of 3 of the 4 of those analogies. B)

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Like I said, watch the semi game before you make a comment! Finally, a sportman was brave enough to protest againts the corrupt FILA and their stupid rules! Yes Ara show a great sportmanship unlike other who only take the medal and is totally quiet. COWARD is the right word for them If you want to make changes then you must PROTEST not be quiet!

The semi and final are two separate games . Libby Tricket finished 12th in the 100m woman butterfly heats before winning in the finals and you don't see anyone calling a cheat, now do you ?

Get over it , what are you ? 11 ?

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Sigh! I'm sure Pillan won't accept it, but this was inevitable.

Swedish wrestler stripped of bronze

AAP - August 16, 2008, 7:58 pm

A Swedish wrestler has been disqualified and stripped of his Olympic bronze medal for dropping it in protest.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said Ara Abrahamian had been kicked out of the Beijing Games for violating the spirit of fair play during the medal ceremony.

Abrahamian walked off the podium and dropped the bronze medal on the mat after taking third in the Greco-Roman 84kg division on Thursday.

He was angry about a disputed penalty call that decided his semifinal match against Italian Andrea Minguzzi, who went on to win the gold medal.

The IOC executive board ruled the wrestler's action amounted to a political demonstration and a mark of disrespect to his fellow athletes.

It said no athlete would receive Abrahamian's medal.

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Unbelievably petulant, but I do wonder what's going on at these Games when we hear similar complaints in the boxing as well. Neither of these sports are in my top ten, so I don't claim to be an expert in either, but all I've heard eminating from the boxing ring and the wrestling arena are complaints about poor scoring. Even if this act of petulance hadn't happended, these sports would still have quesiton marks hanging over them. The IOC and the relevent governing bodies musn't let Abrahamian's very poor behaivour be an excuse for not getting to the bottom of what's going on.

The athlete has been rightly punished for his disrespect but that shouldn't be the end of the matter.

Edited by Rob ♪
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I don't think so. Abrahamian doesn't care and the consequences of his behavior doesn't matter to him anyway at this time at least; there won't be any further Olympic chances for him after this at his age. Perhaps walking off the podium before the anthem gets played (like the Croatian basketball team did at the 1995 Eurobasket in Athens) would've been better and left it that.

This reminds me of that weightlifter (I forgot his name or where he's from) in Barcelona when he angrily slammed his medal on the podium when Pyrros Dimas won his first gold. He too got expelled from the Village.

Another Olympian who never won gold but should've is of course Roy Jones Jr. But he too is remembered and became a world champ as a prizefighter.

We all know Pillan is infuriated about this as a Swede. Pillan, how are you coping with Susanna Kallur crashing at the first hurdle?

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To the poster who said "Like the rest of the Nordic countries"...I disagree. He did not show great sportsmanship. While I agree that he has the right to protest against a corrupt sport, having a temper tantrum at the medal ceremony is not the way to do it.

Most Norwegians disagree with his decision, most of the newspaper commentators (including Aftonbladet in Sweden) do too. I don't think there's a massive movement of supporters.

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To the poster who said "Like the rest of the Nordic countries"...I disagree. He did not show great sportsmanship. While I agree that he has the right to protest against a corrupt sport, having a temper tantrum at the medal ceremony is not the way to do it.

Most Norwegians disagree with his decision, most of the newspaper commentators (including Aftonbladet in Sweden) do too. I don't think there's a massive movement of supporters.

OHHH, please I have read the comments in the norweigan tabloid Dagbladet. Almost all people give their support to Ara! In Swedish Aftonbladet, over 92% support Ara in a poll!!!!!!!!!!!! YES, OVER 92 %!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! READ AGAIN, BECAUSE YOU HAVE TOTALLY WRONG!!!!

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OHHH, please I have read the comments in the norweigan tabloid Dagbladet. Almost all people give their support to Ara! In Swedish Aftonbladet, over 92% support Ara in a poll!!!!!!!!!!!! YES, OVER 92 %!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! READ AGAIN, BECAUSE YOU HAVE TOTALLY WRONG!!!!

News polls are veeeeeeeeeery accurate sources. :rolleyes:

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