26 May 2024
Saturday 9 January 2016 - 15:23
Story Code : 195993

Iran honors legendary wrestler Takhti

Supporters of the late legendary freestyle wrestler Gholamreza Takhti gathered to commemorate his 48th death anniversary.

 

The top sports officials also attended the commemoration held at the Ibn-e Babouyeh cemetery in southern Tehran.

Takhti will not be repeated again. He will always remain in the hearts of people since he proved that to seize the medal is not his priority and showed that honor was more important than winning for him. Takhti is a role model for our younger generation, former Irans National Olympic Committee Secretary General Bahram Afsharzadeh said.

Takhti was born in Tehran on August 27, 1930 and was found dead in a hotel room on January 7, 1968.

He was laid to rest at Ibn-e Babouyeh cemetery in southern Tehran, near Shahr-e Ray, where he is commemorated every year by Iranians.

Takhti won the gold medal in the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne, defeating Boris Kulayev from Soviet Union in the final match.

He also claimed two Olympics silver medals in 1952 Helsinki and 1960 Rome.

Takhti won two World Championships gold medals in 1959 Tehran and 1961 Yokohama.

The free-style wrestler has also seized a gold medal in the 1958 Asian Games held in Tokyo, Japan.

He is the most famous wrestler in Iranian history. The legend was known for his chivalry and sportsmanship and continues to symbolize the essence of sports to the Iranian people.

In 1961, a terrible earthquake occurred in Boein Zahra in western Iran, killing 45,000. Takhti was deeply touched by the suffering. Already one of Irans biggest stars, he began to walk one of the main avenues of Tehran, asking for assistance for the victims. He inspired other champions to follow in his footsteps, and thousands gave donations to alleviate the suffering.

Another example of his character comes from a match in Moscow. After defeating the then-world champion Anatoli Albul, Takhti saw the sorrow on the face of Albuls mother. Takhti went to her and said, Im sorry about the result, but your son is a great wrestler. She smiled and kissed him.

There is another memory that sheds more light on his character. Once he had a match with Russian wrestler Alexander Medved, who had an injured right knee. When Takhti found out that he was injured, he never attacked that leg. Instead, he tried to attack the other leg. Takhti finally lost the match.

Alexander Medved has come to Iran many times over the years to pay respect to the champion at his grave.

By Tehran Times
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