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USA’s Kayla Harrison wins second straight Olympic judo gold

  • Harrison, 26, beats France’s Audrey Tcheuméo in the 78kg final
  • USA star who won gold at London 2012 announces retirement

This time was nothing like 2012. But nothing would ever be like 2012. For on that July day in London when Kayla Harrison went from unknown to American judo sensation, everything exploded inside her: the sexual abuse from of a previous coach, the years of fighting to prove herself strong and the realization that she was the first US woman to win a judo gold. She ran. She jumped. She screamed. She cried. Rare has been the Olympian who celebrated the way Kayla Harrison celebrated when she got her first gold medal.

On Wednesday she still ran and jumped and screamed. Just not as much. Instead, she stood on the medal stand and sang the Star Spangled Banner. The women beside her must have heard. Half the arena might have heard. But she has long shed any sense of shame. The anthem was playing, she wanted to sing, what else would you expect from a friend of Ronda Rousey, who might soon join her in the UFC?

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USA’s Kayla Harrison wins second straight Olympic judo gold

  • Harrison, 26, beats France’s Audrey Tcheuméo in the 78kg final
  • USA star who won gold at London 2012 announces retirement

This time was nothing like 2012. But nothing would ever be like 2012. For on that July day in London when Kayla Harrison went from unknown to American judo sensation, everything exploded inside her: the sexual abuse from of a previous coach, the years of fighting to prove herself strong and the realization that she was the first US woman to win a judo gold. She ran. She jumped. She screamed. She cried. Rare has been the Olympian who celebrated the way Kayla Harrison celebrated when she got her first gold medal.

On Wednesday she still ran and jumped and screamed. Just not as much. Instead, she stood on the medal stand and sang the Star Spangled Banner. The women beside her must have heard. Half the arena might have heard. But she has long shed any sense of shame. The anthem was playing, she wanted to sing, what else would you expect from a friend of Ronda Rousey, who might soon join her in the UFC?

Continue reading...

About the Author

Comments are closed.