August 18, 2016 6:31 pm
Updated: August 19, 2016 12:06 am

Rio 2016: Canada’s Erica Wiebe captures wrestling gold

WATCH ABOVE: Global's Brendon Parker is live, with reaction from from Calgary where Erica Wiebe's family and friends are celebrating her big gold medal win


Canada’s Erica Wiebe fought her way to a gold medal Thursday after defeating Guzel Manyurova of Kazakhstan in freestyle wrestling.

The Stittsville, Ont., native defeated Manyurova 6-0 in the 75kg event.

The match started off slow, but Wiebe was first to score on her opponent, taking two points.

The Canadian quickly added another two points in the second half to lead 4-0 over Manyurova.

“I just took it one takedown at a time,” Wiebe said after the match. “I didn’t think about who I was wrestling, I didn’t think about what they were. I just thought about what I needed to do in that moment and I still don’t really believe it.”

Canada’s Erica Wiebe celebrates with her coach after winning the gold medal in the women’s freestyle 75kg event on August 18, 2016.

Reuters/Mariana Bazo

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The Canadian landed another two points on Manyurova with 16 seconds left in the match.

“I think that the match was perfect,” said Manyurova, who took silver. “The Canadian girl was perfect too and was the best competitor in this game.”

Wiebe battled her way to the finals after overpowering Vasilisa Marzaliuk of Belarus 3-0 on Thursday afternoon.

Her gold is Canada’s 16th medal at the Rio Olympics.

“It hasn’t sunk in yet. I’m never at a loss for words but I’m at a loss for words right now. I think I just gave it my everything today and what I did on the mat just speaks for itself,” Wiebe said on winning gold. “I was just trying to see if it would sink in finally. It doesn’t ever sink in maybe? I woke up and I was a random person and an everyday girl and work hard every day.

“Everyone dreams about singing the national anthem and watching their flag raised but you can’t use words to describe (it),” she said.

The 27-year-old wrestler had previously won gold in the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

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