August 20, 2016 / 3:51 AM / 2 years ago

Cisse's last-second kick delivers gold for Ivory Coast

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Cheick Sallah Cisse, of the Ivory Coast, clinched a stunning victory against Great Britain’s Lutalo Muhammad with a spin kick to the head in the last second of their gold-medal taekwondo bout on Friday.

2016 Rio Olympics - Taekwondo - Men's -80kg Gold Medal Finals - Carioca Arena 3 - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 19/08/2016. Lutalo Muhammad (GBR) of United Kingdom competes against Cheikh Sallah Cisse (CIV) of Ivory Coast. REUTERS/Issei Kato

After trailing the British fighter by four points to six until the waning instants of the match, Cisse scored another four points, the most available in a single maneuver, with a spectacular reverse turning kick to Muhammad’s head.

The victory, in the under 80 kg category, gave Ivory Coast its first-ever gold medal in Olympic history and the country’s second overall medal at the Rio Games, following a bronze for compatriot Ruth Gbagbi in an earlier fight on Friday in the women’s under 67 kg category.

Slideshow (4 Images)

The African country has only won one other Olympic medal ever, a silver in the men’s 400 meters race in 1984.

An emotional Muhammad, who won bronze at London 2012, called the kick “a horrible moment”.

“I came within inches of achieving what has been a life goal for me,” he added. “I was very sad.”

With his silver after Friday night’s fight, Muhammad secured the second taekwondo medal in Rio for the British team.

On Thursday, Welsh fighter Jade Jones won her second gold medal, defeating Spain’s Eva Calvo Gomez in the under 57 kg category.

Reporting by Paulo Prada; editing by Sudipto Ganguly

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