Column: Koco’s Corner #10 – (The Three Combat Sports “Stars of the Week” of 8/5 to 8/11 2012)
In ice hockey, the three stars of a match are the three best players as chosen by a third party, with the first star considered the best of the three players, akin to the man of the match in other sports. So once a week on Koco’s Corner I will choose the three stars of the week from all of the Combat Sports.
This week was the hardest to choose just three stars with the Olympics in full swing we had to bump a pro wrestling star for the third straight week and even bump a MMA star after UFC 150 especially since the main event between Benson Henderson and Frankie Edgar was way too close to call.
1. Jordan Burroughs (Wrestling)
Jordan Burroughs walked away with gold after becoming the USA’s first Olympic Games Wrestling champion of London 2012.
The USA has a long history of successful Olympic Wrestling campaigns, but they had not won gold in London until Burroughs defeated Iran’s Sadegh Goudarzi 1-0 1-0 in the 74kg Freestyle class.
Jordan Burroughs Gold Medal Press Conference
2. Katie Taylor (Boxing)
Ireland’s Katie Taylor added Olympic Games gold to her four World Championships titles – but she was made to work hard for her 10-8 win over Russia’s Sofya Ochigava amid an extraordinary atmosphere at ExCeL.
With the decibel levels surely hitting new heights, Taylor set about business in her usual way in the Light Weight final, pushing forward and flinging right hooks at Ochigava, a tough, two-time former world silver medallist.
Taylor, crowned Ireland’s first Olympic Games Boxing champion since Michael Carruth at Barcelona 1992, said: ‘It was a huge relief. I didn’t know which the way decision had gone and I thought it might go to countback because there was a big delay.
Katie Taylor – Hometown Hero
3. Saori Yoshida (wrestling)
Yoshida swept Canada’s Tonya Verbeek 3-0, 2-0 to win the Olympic title in women’s freestyle wrestling at 55 kg/121 lbs. before a sellout crowd of 6,500 fans at ExCel North Arena 2.
Yoshida has won nine World titles. She has lost just twice in her amazing international career on the Senior level.