Emotional Sarah Stevenson won Britain’s first gold medal of the WTF World Championships and immediately dedicated it to her parents.
Ten years after her first world title Stevenson successfully returned to South Korea to regain her crown in thrilling circumstances.
The 28-year-old from Doncaster defeated China’s Guo Yunfei in the 67 kg weight category.
The scores were tied at 3-3 after the first round and stayed that way, including through sudden death, until the end of a gripping contest.
However, tearful Stevenson, hugged by husband and coach, Steve Jennings, earned the verdict from the referee for being the most ‘pro active fighter.’
The 2008 Olympic bronze medallist almost withdrew from the squad after a period she’s called the worst of her life.
Her mum, Diane, was diagnosed with terminal cancer in January and her father, Roy, has a brain tumour.
“I cannot describe what it’s going to mean to my mum and dad,” said Stevenson.
“My whole family will be so proud. Hopefully, I have given them something to smile about. It’s just an amazing feeling.”
Now Sarah is hot favourite for gold at next year’s London Olympics.
Great Britain Performance Director Gary Hall said:”It was a very special performance.
“Sarah had been the most pro active fighter but you never know which way these verdicts will go.
“And China are one of the big players in the sport. But credit to the referee for giving the decision the right way.
“Sarah was in bits after the final and understandably so. However, her family can be so proud of her.”
Stevenson dropped only one point on the first day of competition to guarantee a bronze medal and semi-final against home favourite Hwang Kyung-Seon.
And the reigning European champion picked up where she left off on Monday, defeating the World and Olympic champion 8-5 to reach the final.
Result - Women 67kg, semi-finals: Sarah Stevenson bt Hwang Kyung-Seon (South Korea) 8-5. Final: Stevenson bt Guo Yunfei (China) 3-3 after sudden death. Won on referee’s call.