Russia claimed a hat-trick of gold medals on the final day of the wrestling competition ©Getty Images

Russia were the dominant nation once again as they bagged a superb hat-trick of European Games gold medals on the final day of wrestling competitions here today.

The result saw the Russians top the wrestling medal table with 11 golds, and 18 in total, while the hosts finished with a decent haul of six golds.

In a thrilling conclusion to one of the best-attended sports at the Games so far, Aleksandr Bogomoev got his nation off to the best possible start with a controversial victory over Georgia’s Beka Lomtadze in the 61 kilogrammes final.

With the score at 10-6 to the Russian, Lomtadze attempted to throw his opponent and was awarded two points but the coach in his corner wanted more.

He challenged the decision but it was Bogomoev who was awarded the extra two points, allowing him to further stretch his lead to 13-8 and he comfortably saw it out to take gold.

“We both got two points, so I think it was a fair decision,” he said.

“I won, but I am not satisfied with my fight in the final."

Home favourite and current world and European champion Haji Aliyev gave the crowd something to cheer by winning the first of three Azerbaijani bronze medals, while Ukraine’s Vasyl Shuptar also finished on the podium.

Magomedrasul Gazimagomedov then built on his compatriot’s success by overcoming the tough challenge posed by Poland’s Magomedmurad Gadzhiev in their 70kg final.

In what was the closest of the four finals, Gazimagomedov just had too much power for his Polish counterpart, eventually clinching gold by virtue of a 3-1 scoreline.

Turkey's Taha Akgul sealed the final European Games wrestling gold with a confident victory over Aleksei Shemarov
Turkey's Taha Akgul sealed the final European Games wrestling gold with a confident victory over Aleksei Shemarov ©Getty Images

Ruslan Dibirgadzhiyev claimed the hosts’ second bronze of the evening and Yakup Gor clinched Turkey’s first medal of the day.

The 86kg gold medal contest provided the most comfortable win of today’s action and saw Russia seal a deserved hat-trick as Abdulrashid Sadulaev made light work of Moldova’s Piotr Ianulov, taking just 97 seconds to seal the title.

The Russian managed to lock his opponent in a grapple that would see him earn successive points and a victory by absolute superiority as the Moldovan had no answer.

Radoslaw Marcinkiewicz earned Poland’s first medal of the session, much to the disappointment of the home crowd as he edged Azerbaijan’s Nurmaqomed Qadijev in the bronze medal match, while Sandro Aminashvili beat Hungary’s Istvan Vereb in a bout which won’t live long in the memory.

As some of the packed-out audience slowly trickled out having seen the last Azerbaijani contest of the evening, Taha Akgul of Turkey stepped out on to the mat and delivered a superb display to reign supreme in the 125kg category as he cruised to a 6-0 thrashing of Belarusian Aleksei Shemarov.

Jamaladdin Magomedov ensured Azerbaijan’s wrestling campaign on home soil would end in positive fashion as he claimed one of the two bronze medals on offer.

The other went to Geno Petriashvili, whose victory received a rapturous response as it was over an Armenian wrestler.

The day of intense action came after five people were forced to undergo tests at an ophthalmology clinic following complaints of “burning eyes” due to the bright lights at the venue.

Following the tests, they returned to the venue but the lighting was not changed for the evening, despite the earlier issues.

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