08:28 GMT21 June 2021
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    The famed Russian judo fighter has secured the first gold medal for Russia in the 2016 Olympics in a year when many wondered whether the country's athletes would be allowed to participate.

    Russia's Beslan Mudranov defeated Kazakhstan's Yeldos Smetov in the final of the men's 60kg division. The 30 year-old Mudranov is of Kabardin-Balkar descent and is the two-time European Judo Champion.

    ​Coming into the week many wondered whether fierce Russian athletes like Mudranov would be allowed to participate after the IOC sought to ban all participation by the country's athletes in connection to a doping scandal. What would have been an across the board punishment of athletes by association was criticized as using "sport as war" against Russia.


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