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Grand Prix Judo Portugal 2023: Spoilers and Premiers
Sports Bulletin Report ALMADA: With the 2nd day of Grand Prix Portugal 2023 now at an end, it’s time to take stock of another exciting day of competition. Here are some of the bigger stories that inspired us from today’s events. Nomonov Stakes his Claim for an Olympic Spot Uzbekistan has a good problem at -73kg, with multiple athletes currently making waves on the world circuit and looking to secure a spot at the Paris 2024 Olympics. Two were present in Almada and with the early exit of Shakhram Akhadov at the hands of eventual bronze medallist Aranda Olalla of Spain, plus the absence of world number 6 Murodjon Yuldoshev, there was a chance for Obidkhon Nomonov to make a claim for that prize. He seized it with both hands, taking his first grand prix gold medal and it was not easy. Semif-inal Nomonov (UZB) vs Kang (KOR) His round 1 and 2 matches against Chikhelidze of Georgia and junior world champion Tanaka of Japan saw golden scores lasting more than 6 minutes, with Nomonov coming from behind against Tanaka to take the win with a huge driving ko-soto-gake. The Uzbek had to claw back the fight once again when he met Kang (KOR) in the semi-final, flattening his opponent with a beautiful uchi-mata to ko-uchi-gari combination, with only 3 seconds left on the clock. Another big throw in the form of a harai-makikomi against Smagulov (KAZ) in the dying seconds of the final secured the top spot, keeping Nomonov well in the running for that coveted Olympic place. Coughlan Wins Maiden Grand Prix Title Aoife Coughlan (AUS) gave a workmanlike performance in the -70kg category to take home her first grand prix gold medal and only the second ever for her country. Highlights included two wins using a strong turnover into kata-gatame, first on Sook (DEN) in round 1 and then on Eriksson (SWE) in the semi-final. She also used a nice ko-uchi-makikomi against Gercsak (HUN) in the quarter-final, who herself was on good form, throwing strongly in the early rounds but lacking stamina as the day went on. A tactical victory over top seed Rodriguez rounded out Coughlan’s performance, as she continues to build good momentum towards Paris. Latisev Spoils Muki’s Return to Form With Brilliant Bronze Sagi Muki has been in the doldrums recently. The high of an Olympic team medal aside, where he dispatched -90kg technician Igolnikov to help his native Israel take bronze, Muki hasn’t stood on a world tour podium for over 2 years, the last time being at the 2021 Masters in Doha. He seemed to have been lacking in confidence somewhat and has struggled recently against both the younger up-and-coming fighters and his long-time rivals. It was therefore great to see a hint of the form that made a world champion in the -81kg category. Despite going behind in all of his matches, he didn’t panic and managed to come back and win 3 out of 5 contests, including a couple of massive dropping ippon-seoi-nage. Despite this, he had to settle for 5th place, as 19-year-old Mihail Latisev (MDA) came to spoil the party. Latisev has a mean seoi-nage of his own, putting it to good use in the early rounds against Aregba (FRA) and Fernando (POR), before flooring the explosive Frank de Wit (NED) with a massive ura-nage and quite possibly chalking up the throw of the day. Latisev made light work of Muki, scoring two waza-ari in 45 seconds to win the bronze. We look forward to seeing what he can do next. Moraes Makes her First Mark at Senior Level Gabriella Moraes (BRA), ranked a distant 105 in the world, stormed through to the final of the -63kg category, to achieve her first major result at senior level and indeed her first medal on the World Judo Tour. The former cadet world silver medallist notched up 4 excellent wins, including a sage tactical victory against top seed Barrios (VEN) in the semi-final. After a tough first match against the similarly-ranked Novitski (ISR) in which she won with o-uchi-gari in golden score, she powered her way past the higher-ranked Zachova (CZE), Padilla Guerrero (ESP) and finally Barrios, scoring multiple times with a well-executed hikikomi-gaeshi. Against home hero Timo (POR) in the final, two careless attacks against her opponent’s arm cost her the fight but the Brazilian will be delighted with the result and will surely hope that this silver medal is the start of something big. -63kg: A Job Well Done for Timo and for Portugal Venezuela is not a small judo country anymore. For many years, they have been progressing and improving, reaching more and more final blocks of international competitions. That's why there is no surprise in having Anriquelis Barrios as the top seed of the category. We know that being in that position offers an advantage, but an advantage that is the consequence of regular good results. It also brings extra pressure and a sense of responsibility. -73kg: The Best Defence Is to Attack for Nomonov It was a true marathon if you wished to reach the final of the category as there were almost 60 athletes engaged. The best runners of the day were Zhansay Smagulov (KAZ) and Obidkhon Nomonov (UZB), who reached the final and competed for gold. With the early elimination of top seed, Sharkhram Akhadov (UZB), the draw table was quite open and offered chances to other athletes to shine. -70kg: Aoife Coughlan Upsets the Odds Despite Anriquelis Barrios not reaching the final in the lower weight division, her Venezuelan teammate Elvismar Rodriguez did succeed, to face Aoife Coughlan (AUS) for the gold medal. Rodriguez has been the leader of her team for quite a while. Looking at her prize list gives a good idea of it, since she already has nine grand prix medals to her name, nine grand slam medals and seven medals at the continental championships in Pan-America; quite something! But Rodriguez is still looking for the consecration at the world championships, Masters and of course Olympic Games. This new medal, whatever the colour will be a new step towards that goal. -81kg: Lee Is Back Of the tournament's eight seeds, only Achraf Moutii (MAR) failed to make it to the quarter-finals. We can therefore say without hesitation that the world rankings had a real impact on the course of the competition. Apart from Moutii and to the benefit of Zaur Dvalashvili (GEO), all top seeded competitors managed to make their way through the preliminary rounds to enter the quarter-finals, leaving no chance for the underdogs to find a place under the Portuguese sun.
Judo: Superson Anastasiia earns top position
Sports Bulletin Report ISLAMABAD:-If there are top seeds in the cadets, as is the case with the juniors and seniors, it is also no less true that things are more open in this age category because each competitor, as strong as she is, is still perfectible. It is therefore not so surprising that it was two competitors who were not among the top seeds who qualified for the final of the first category of the 2022 edition of the World Cadet Championships: Anastasiia Superson (UKR) and Begumnaz Dogruyol (TUR). Turkish women, particularly successful two weeks ago in Ecuador, on the occasion of the Junior World Championships, again present among the best in Sarajevo. The coming years promise to be golden for Türkiye. Anastasiia Superson (UKR) vs Begumnaz Dogruyol (TUR) The least we can say is that both competitors jumped to action immediately, looking for strong movement, a score or the transition to ne-waza. At this little game, Superson was a more precise, literally hunting for a good ne-waza sequence, probably inspired by her compatriot, double world champion and Olympic medallist, Daria Bilodid. In the first match for a bronze medal, Laziza Haydarova (UZB), the number 1 seed, and Tatricia Tomankova (SVK) faced each other. After four minutes and a virgin scoreline with nothing on the board but a penalty, Haydarova and Tomankova entered the golden score period to decide the winner. Laziza Haydarova (UZB) vs Tatricia Tomankova (SVK) With one more shido to her name, Tomankova was in danger, but everything was still possible and the Slovak judoka scored a waza-ari with an opportunist’s counterattack. The bronze medal went to Tatricia Tomankova. Zilan Ertem (TUR) vs Nina Auer (AUT) In the second match for a bronze medal, we found on the tatami, the other Turkish competitor Zilan Ertem (TUR) against Nina Auer (AUT). Therefore, the top 4 seeds of the group were all fighting for bronze medals, a noteworthy statistic. First to action, Ertem scored a waza-ari with a yoko-otoshi. It did not take a lot more time for Ertem to add one more waza-ari from a low tai-otoshi and a clear win in less than one minute. Final (-40 kg) SUPERSON Anastasiia (UKR) vs DOGRUYOL Begumnaz (TUR) Bronze Medal Fights (-40 kg) HAYDAROVA Laziza (UZB) vs TOMANKOVA Patricia (SVK) ERTEM Zilan (TUR) vs AUER Nina (AUT) Final Results (-40 kg) 1. SUPERSON Anastasiia (UKR) 2. DOGRUYOL Begumnaz (TUR) 3. TOMANKOVA Patricia (SVK) 3. ERTEM Zilan (TUR) 5. HAYDAROVA Laziza (UZB) 5. AUER Nina (AUT) 7. PROLIC Natalija (SRB) 7. YULDASHBEKOVA Sabina (KAZ)
Olympics By All Means
Pedro Lasuen Tokyo is over! Stop staring at the photo album and the recorded images. Today we take a new path, an extraordinary adventure, the preamble to something great. Today, Olympic Day, judo opens qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. Welcome to Mongolia. As things are, with half the world travelling, airports overwhelmed and airlines in full overbooking mode, it takes courage to get on a plane, just as it takes courage to organise a grand slam, with all the guarantees and a deluxe line-up. It was the bet of the Mongolian Judo Association in its return to the World Judo Tour, as the organiser after six years of absence. Speaking of value, one of the values of judo, incidentally, it should be noted in the first place, is the presence of the Russian team in the Ulaanbaatar Grand Slam, under the banner of the International Judo Federation (IJF). As it is probable that many do not understand it, we asked the IJF General Director, Vlad Marinescu, to clear the doubts. “The International Judo Federation is against war, against any kind of violence, as well as hate and discrimination. Sport is not politics, sport is a bridge between different cultures. Our values are the values of sport, where there is no room for politics.” It is not a bet, as some may have thought, but normal. Russian athletes will defend the colours of the IJF and must respect, like all other judoka, the current rules of judo. Any type of political vindication or unsportsmanlike attitude, such as the refusal to salute before and after each fight, will be sanctioned as stipulated in the regulations because in judo there are no distinctions. That said, let's talk about sport, which is our thing. The President of the Mongolian Judo Association, H.E. Khaltmaa Battulga, welcomed the 155 athletes from thirty countries, who have travelled to Mongolia. Battulga was especially grateful to the IJF for "allowing my country to host such an important tournament after six years." 155 men and 100 women will fight for medals and the first Olympic points. The number is lower than similar events, but if we take a look at the draw, we can see that there are people of high quality, which makes this Grand Slam a replica of the Masters. Apart from some notable absences, some at the last minute, such as the Japanese Ono Shohei, or the German Anna-Maria Wagner, the level is exquisite, starting with the Japanese team, with its host of Olympic and world champions. They have not come to visit the huge statue of Genghis Khan and go for a pony ride. They are here to win. The Netherlands and Israel have brought the cream of their men's and women's teams, while Korea and Uzbekistan have also opted for Mongolia as the first springboard, and we cannot forget, because it would be a huge mistake, the local team, in full reconfiguration, with the young but already consecrated and others about to flourish. The competition begins on Friday and ends on Sunday. The preliminary phases will debut at 12:30 p.m.and the final block will start at 5:00 p.m., Mongolian time. From now on, the jokes and experiments are over. The serious thing begins and it begins well, with top-level judoka. We are convinced that some Olympic champions will come out of the Ulaanbaatar Grand Slam, in Paris 2024, and just for that, the mission has already been accomplished.
Tbilisi Judo Grand Slam: 278 athletes to fight for top honour
Sports Bulletin Report Tbilisi (Georgia):-It's hot in Georgia, and the Tbilisi Grand Slam hasn't even started yet. What has happened, however, is the draw, and the only thing we know is that the temperature will rise even more. Prepare your fans, summer clothes and cold drinks, because judo has arrived in Georgia, and here, you will have to sweat to win. There will be 278 judoka, 173 men and 105 women, from 36 countries. The tournament is the prelude to the starting gun of the Olympic qualification, which will begin three weeks from now in Mongolia. Georgia is an opportunity for the younger generation, as well as for stars who want to take advantage of the absence of others to analyze their form before going on the hunt for the points that lead to Paris. An example of this is the presence of the -78kg German world champion, Anna-Maria Wagner. At -52kg, Reka Pupp, Distria Krasniqi and Astrid Gneto will make for strong competition, as will Eteri Liparteliani, Rafaela Silva and Priscilla Gneto at -57kg. A massive public presence is expected, as the tournament always brings record attendance. Crowds will especially flock on Saturday as Lasha Shavdatuashvili, national hero, best judoka of all time in Georgia, current world champion and vice-Olympic champion will compete in -73kg. Japan has left the women's team at home, but it has brought a men's team of young hopefuls to Tbilisi, such as Koga Genki and Oyoshi Ken, who will be called to pick up the baton of the current stars in a few years. There is no better place for them to get hands-on experience than Georgia. The competition will begin on Friday at 11am, Saturday at 11:30am and Sunday at 12pm. The final block will take place at 5:00 p.m.