Top 7 Breakthrough Moments of Ukrainian Sport in 2018

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Man practising judo

As 2018 slowly but surely comes to an end, we decided to review the brightest moments of Ukrainian sport that took place this year: Usyk's world championship, gold medals in 2018 Winter Olympics, the youngest world champion in judo and much more.

The first gold medal for freestyle skiing

Oleksandr Abramenko, gold medalist at 2018 Winter OlympicsThe first major breakthrough of the year took place at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. During the men's aerials event in freestyle skiing, Ukrainian Oleksandr Abramenko scored 128.51 points and won the gold medal - the first for Ukraine in the freestyle category. In 2017-2018, Abramenko won silver in a World Cup podium in Lake Placid, the United States, that secured his spot for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

22 medals in 2018 Winter Paralympics

Ukrainian sportmen at 2018 Winter ParalympicsDuring the 2018 Winter Paralympics, Ukrainian team won 22 medals, namely 7 gold, 7 silver and 8 bronze medals, reported Ukrinform. The team competed in biathlon, skiing and snowboarding, with biathlon proving the most fruitful - 4 gold medals. Overall, the team ranked 6th in the team standings. In 2014, Ukraine ranked 2nd by the total amount of medals, bringing home 25 awards.

Oleksandr Usyk secured the cruiserweight championship

Oleksandr Usyk, absolute cruiserweight champion of the worldUkrainian master Oleksandr Usyk is the first boxer in history to hold all four major world championships at cruiserweight. So far in his professional career, Usyk had no losses either by knockout or judge decision. In 2018, Usyk fought the former unified cruiserweight world champion Murat Gassiev and the former WBC cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew. Both fights ended in Usyk's victory. This year Usyk also rose up in the ranking of world best boxers by The Ring. Now, he holds the 4th rank regardless of weight class. The first rank is occupied by another Ukrainian, Vasyl Lomachenko.

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Vasyl Lomachenko is the world's #1 boxer

Vasyl Lomachenko, world's #1 boxerA Ukrainian boxer Vasyl Lomachenko is no stranger to world records: scoring 396 and 1 loss, he is ranked the world's best active boxer by ESPN; the Boxing Writers Association of America and the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board. In 2018, Lomachenko got on the top of yet another rate, this time by The Ring magazine, scoring the first in the world rating. In December 2018, Lomachenko will fight José Pedraza in a unification fight in New York City.

Judo's youngest world champion from Ukraine

Daria Bilodid, judo world champion from UkraineThe 17-year-old Daria Bilodid is the new judo world champion - and the youngest to hold the title. This year, Bilodid won gold in the women’s under-48 kilograms category at the IJF 2018 World Championship, as InsideTheGames reported. It's also worth noting that Bilodid is the first Ukrainian to ever win the judo World Championship. Another notable victory of the young champion is defeating Paula Pareto, an Argentine judoka and gold medalist at the 2016 Summer Olympics, during the World Championship semi-finals.

Gold medal in men's heavyweight category judo

Iakiv Khammo, gold medalist at the Hague Grand Prix 2018 in judo One of the latest sports news in Ukraine is the victory of at The Hague Grand Prix 2018. As JudoInside reported, Former World Championships bronze medalist came first in the men's heavyweight category defeating Vladut Simionescu. This year's victory is the third Grand Prix title for Khammo and the first International Judo Federation gold since the Baku Grand Slam in 2016.

Elite IFBB Fitness World Champion from Ukraine

Oksana Orobets, Elite IFBB Women's Fitness ChampionFinally, the latest breakthrough of Ukraine in sports was brought by Oksana Orobets, who ranked 1st in the Elite IFBB Women's Fitness Championship. The competition took place in Beijing and on November 18 the jury ruled out Orobets' victory. The young Ukrainian will bring home $75000 prize and a gold medal.

Photo sources: Reuters, Vladimir Astapkovich / RIA News, National Sports Committee for the Disabled of Ukraine, European Judo Association, Judo International Federation, ringtv.com, inside.fit, unsplash.com. All images belong to their rightful authors.

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