American judoka Kayla Harrison is now one win away from her second consecutive Olympic gold medal.
Harrison needed just 1:43 to defeat Slovenia’s Anamari Velensek by ippon in the semifinal round of the 78 kg weight class, the third straight match in which she’s won in less than two minutes. Harrison, who won gold in this event in London four years ago, needed 1:45 to beat Hungary’s Abigel Joo in her quarterfinal match and 42 seconds to defeat China’s Zhehui Zhang in the Round of 16.
Harrison faces France’s Audrey Tcheumeo in the gold medal match, with Tcheumeo beating her quarterfinal and semifinal opponents by virtue of incurring fewer shido (penalties). Currently ranked second in the world in the 78 kg weight class, Tcheumeo took bronze four years ago after losing to Great Britain’s Gemma Gibbons in the semifinal round.
Harrison’s match can be seen live at NBCOlympics.com and on the NBC Sports app, beginning at approximately 3:56 p.m. Eastern.