In the final bout of karate’s Olympic debut, jubilation turned to dejection for Tareg Hamedi of Saudi Arabia, whose first-minute knockout of Iran’s Sajad Ganjzadeh disqualified him in their gold medal contest Saturday.

Hamedi dominated in the early stages of the bout, which served as the final of the men’s kumite in the 75-kilogram division (about 165 pounds). He scored a three-point “ippon” (a technique considered to be a decisive blow) with a hooking kick less than 10 seconds into the fight and added a one-point “yuko” after he punched Ganjzadeh several seconds later.

Almost a full minute in, Hamedi held a 4-1 lead.

But just before that first minute expired, he connected on a high left kick to the head, sending Ganjzadeh to his back, unconscious.

Hamedi hopped into a quick skip and thumped his chest. Ganjzadeh seemed to scream as he went to the mat, and as the official began counting down, two medics ran over to treat him.

Ganjzadeh was motionless and medics placed an oxygen mask on his face before removing him on a stretcher. Hamedi, who initially seemed certain of victory — what would have been Saudi Arabia’s first Olympic gold medal in any sport — appeared apprehensive as officials conferred with each other.

Moments later, Hamedi was disqualified for a hansoku, a serious violation of the rules. The NBC television broadcast said he had unleashed an unchecked attack, following through on his strike as a mixed martial artist would, which is considered too dangerous by Olympic karate standards. Ganjzadeh, who was informed of the decision when he regained consciousness, was awarded the gold medal, and Hamedi was given silver.

Tareg Hamedi of Saudi Arabia was disqualified from the Olympic karate final event when he knocked out Iran’s Sajad Ganjzadeh on Aug. 7. (IOC)

“I’m happy about the gold medal, but I’m sad that I had to win it like this,” Ganjzadeh later told reporters.

Hamedi, who fell to his knees in tears after the decision, later held up his silver medal on the podium, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Ganjzadeh. After a series of photos, they embraced and Ganjzadeh raised Hamedi’s hand in the air. Turkey’s Ugur Aktas and Ryutaro Araga of Japan took the bronze medals in the event.

“If you ask me if I agree or not, I disagree, of course, because I love the gold medal,” Hamedi said through an interpreter. “But I am satisfied with the level of performance I gave, and I accept their decision. I don’t have any objection. I think I played well. That’s all I can say.”