London 2012: Claressa Shields wins first U.S. women’s boxing gold
Claressa Shields of the US celebrates defeating Nadezda Torlopova of Russia to win gold during the women’s boxing Middleweight of the 2012 London Olympic Games. PHOTO/Alberto Pizzoli/AFP/GettyImages
Claressa Shields won the first middleweight gold medal in women’s Olympic boxing, a dominant victory by an exuberant American teenager who danced, brawled and even stuck out her tongue.
Shields capped her rapid rise through the amateur ranks in the past two years with three strong performances in the London ring, providing USA Boxing with a much-needed boost.
Her (Shields’) power and elusiveness were far too much for Russia’s 33-year-old Nadezda Torlopova, nearly twice Shields’ age and half her speed at times. Shields won fairly easily, 19-12.
She shuffled, sidestepped and preened while showing off her power and speed, sticking her tongue out at Torlopova in the final round after dodging several punches by bobbing her head from side to side.
Shields won the 12-member American team’s only gold medal in London. The winningest nation in Olympic boxing history got no medals from its men’s team for the first time, and flyweight Marlen Esparza won a bronze.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press