United States wrestler Tervel Dlagnev has received his bronze medal from the London 2012 Olympics freestyle 120 kilograms competition at a U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC) ceremony in Lincoln, Nebraska.
The Olympic Medal Reallocation Ceremony followed retrospective bans in 2019 following re-testing of samples given by the original gold and silver medallists, Artur Taymazov of Uzbekistan and Davit Modzmanashivili of Georgia.
As a result the original bronze medallists, Komeil Ghasemi of Iran and Bilyal Makhov of Russia, were declared joint Olympic champions and Dlagnev and Kazakhstan’s Daulet Shabanbay, defeated in the repechage, were awarded the bronze medals.
Dlagnev, 34, who was born in Bulgaria and moved to the United States aged four, received his medal from Anita DeFrantz, a member of the International Olympic Committee and the USOPC board of directors, herself an Olympic bronze medallist for the US, as part of the women's eight rowing crew at Montreal 1976.
The ceremony took place in front a large crowd at Pinnacle Bank Arena, just prior to the final session of the 2022 Big Ten Conference Wrestling Championships.
Wearing his 2012 U.S. Olympic podium uniform, Dlagnev stood at attention on the podium as the Olympic Anthem was played in its entirety. When the music ended, the fans chanted “USA-USA” in his honour.
Dlagnev was able to have his entire family join him on the Olympic medal platform for pictures before leaving the arena to further applause.
He was presented with his official Olympic ceremonial flowers by Rich Bender, USA Wrestling’s executive director and a fellow member with DeFrantz of the USOPC board of directors.
Dlagnev also represented the United States at Rio 2016, where he finished fifth, and is a two-time world bronze medallist.