Levan Tediashvili

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameLevan•Tediashvili
Used nameLevan•Tediashvili
Original nameლევან•თედიაშვილი
Other namesLevan Kitoyevich Tediashvili, Леван Китоевич Тедиашвили
Born15 March 1948 in Gegmoubani, Kakheti (GEO)
Measurements186 cm / 90 kg
AffiliationsLokomotiv, Tbilisi
NOC Soviet Union
Nationality Georgia
Medals OG
Gold 2
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 2


Levan “Teddy” Tediashvili is considered the greatest technical wrestler in Soviet history. He won Olympic gold medals in 1972 middleweight freestyle as well as 1976 light-heavyweight freestyle. He also won World Championships in 1971 (middleweight), 1973, 1974, and 1975 (light-heavyweight), and European Championships in 1974, 1976 (light-heavyweight), and 1978 (heavyweight). In Tediashvili’s Olympic gold medal performances, he twice defeated the United States’ Peterson brothers, John in 1972, and Ben in 1976.

Tediashvili studied law during his wrestling career and was known as a brash performer who often played to the crowd during his matches. He did not lose a match between 1971 and 1976, with his first loss after six years of dominance coming in the final of the 1977 Soviet Championships, where he lost by decision to Aslanbek Bisultanov. His only loss at a major international tournament came at the 1978 World Championships, where in the final round of freestyle heavyweight, Tediashvili lost to Harald Büttner by decision and had to settle for silver.

Tediashvili also tried to make the 1980 Soviet Olympic team, but lost to Ilia Mate in the final of the Soviet Championships. In addition to his 1977 and 1980 Soviet Championships silver medals, Tediashvili won the Soviet freestyle middleweight title in 1971 and freestyle light-heavyweight titles in 1973 and 1974. Tediashvili was also a world 1973 light-heavyweight champion at sambo, the Russian self-defense sport resembling judo.

After finishing his sporting career, Tediashvili worked as a wrestling coach in his native Georgia. He was inducted into the FILA International Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2005. He also became an actor appearing in the films “Khareba da Gogia” in 1987 and in “Brighton 4th” in 2021.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal Nationality As
1972 Summer Olympics Wrestling URS GEO Levan Tediashvili
Middleweight, Freestyle, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
1976 Summer Olympics Wrestling URS GEO Levan Tediashvili
Light-Heavyweight, Freestyle, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold

Special Notes