Sunday, April 3, 2016

Samsun Grand Prix 2016 - Turkey DAY THREE


Women: -78kg | +78kg 
Men: -90kg | -100kg | +100kg 

After the first two days of competition, which saw the French delegation take the lead of the nation ranking and the Turkish delegation climb to the second place at home, while, especially on the second day, the younger generation of champions pointed its nose, the public of the Yasar Dogu Sports Arena in Samsun was awaiting the heavier categories. Thus the last five weight categories which competed today were: Women’s -78kg and +78kg and Men’s -90kg, -100kg and +100kg.   

In the morning, the IJF President, Mr. Marius VIZER, visited the TOHM (Turkish Olympic Preparation Centre) training centre located in the centre of Samsun. Accompanied by the President of the Turkish Judo Federation, Mr. Fatih UYSAL, and Mr. Omer Altunsoy, Vice President of the Turkish General Directorate of Sports and Youth, as well as many officials, he discovered the excellent facilities offered to young competitors who are predestined to an international career.

The Samsun TOHM is part of a network of centres spread across the country. Three of them (Samsun, Kocaeli and Trabzon) provide full accommodation to young competitors aged 16 to 20, while the last two (Ankara and Konya) welcome athletes during the days for the training sessions.

“The project started two years ago“, explained Mr. Fatih UYSAL, before adding, “We have a strong partnership with the Minister of Youth and Sports. The athletes that are present here in Samsun for instance, receive full accommodation and their school fees are also covered as well as the medical care. They can train six days a week, two times a day.“ The objective of those centres is to prepare the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. “We prepare our future top level athletes“, said Mr. UYSAL, “and we also prepare their future career by giving them the possibility to follow their studying.“

From left to right: Mr. Fatih UYSAL, TJF President, Mr. Metin OZKAN, Samsun GP General Manager, Mr. Omer Altunsoy, Vice President of the Turkish General Directorate of Sports and Youth and Mr. Marius Vizer, IJF President

Four coaches, medical and school staff are at the disposal of the judoka. If the centres prepare the Turkish athletes, they also welcome foreign delegations that can come in Turkey during their preparation for the big events: “For instance, Georgia and Azerbaijan are regular users of our facilities and we will increase the capacity in the future to welcome more and more people,“ added the TJF President. So far the focus was put on the cadets and juniors categories, but the idea is to unite all the age categories to create a powerful group of athletes. “The visit of the IJF President is very important for us. It offers us visibility and credibility. The young athletes were really happy to see that the President of the International Federation came to visit them“, concluded Mr. Fatih UYSAL.

At the end of the visit, Mr. Vizer commented: “There are only a few countries in the world that can offer such kind of opportunities and facilities to their athletes. Congratulations to the tremendous work done by the federation and the Turkish authorities, particularly the Minister of Youth and Sports. You are on a good path. The necessity to have strong partnerships with the different Ministries (sports, youth, education) is crucial. With a good strategy, you can really achieve great results. You can be proud of the Turkish judo community, you have a beautiful judo family with a lot of good and competent people.“

From left to right: Mr. Fatih UYSAL, Mr. Natik Canca, Mr. Marius Vizer and Mr. Ibrahim Oztek

To illustrate this, during the visit of the dojo and of the accommodation facilities, Mr. Vizer had a fruitful discussion with Mr. Omer Altunsoy, Vice President of the Turkish General Directorate of Sports and Youth, and could exchange his views with three Turkish Judo Federation presidents (Mr. Fatih UYSAL, current President, and Mr. Ibrahim Oztek and Mr. Natik Canca, former TJF presidents).


-78kg: MALONGA Overcomes the Power of TCHEUMEO             

For the third day in a row, team France put its two athletes in the final as Audrey TCHEUMEO and Madeleine MALONGA both qualified to fight for the gold medal. Tcheumeo had two pretty easy first rounds as she successively defeated Park Yujin (KOR) and Marta TORT MERINO (ESP) in less than thirty seconds. In the semi-final she was opposed to the Cameroon Hortense Vanessa MBALLA ATANGANA and she actually had to wait until the end to win by a single yuko and two penalties. MALONGA’s way to the final was a little tougher but the young athlete perfectly controlled all her opponents to face a famous elder at the end of the day.

As usual Audrey TCHEUMEO started by putting a lot of pressure on her opponent who had to concede a first waza-ari with a well-executed sumi-gaeshi. But within a few seconds Tcheumeo was penalised three times for the wrong grip and for stepping outside of the fighting area. When the former world champion got penalised a fourth time for escaping from MALONGA’s grip, her waza-ari advantage just vanished giving the victory to her young teammate.

The first bronze medal fight saw the winner of the last Casablanca African Open, Marta TORT MERINO (ESP) and Yahima RAMIREZ (POR), who finished at the bottom of the podium on the occasion of the last World Championships in Chelyabinsk, facing for a place on the podium. RAMIREZ was the first to be penalised for a wrong grip with a shido. Then both athletes were penalised for passivity. Less than a minute to go and both competitors again were penalised with a shido: 2 for TORT MERINO, 3 for RAMIREZ and 18 seconds before the final gong, as the two protagonists were penalised again, the Portuguese was disqualified (4 shido) offering her first Grand Prix medal to Marta TORT MERINO.

The 2013 world champion, SOL Kyong (PRK), was present today in Samsun, seeking for more points for her Olympic qualification, but she was defeated by RAMIREZ in quarterfinal. She finally entered the final block to be opposed to Hortence Vanessa MBALLA ATANGANA (CMR) in the bronze medal fight. MBALLA ATANGANA started the fight by immediately imposing a high rhythm, but the experienced SOL tool advantage of the situation to score a first waza-ari before both athlete got penalised with a shido, one for passivity, the other for incorrect attack. The second strong attack of the former world champion gave her the opportunity to score a second waza-ari for a third Grand Prix medal here in Samsun.

TCHEUMEO, Audrey (FRA) vs. MALONGA, Madeleine (FRA)

Bronze Medal Fights
TORT MERINO, Marta (ESP) vs. RAMIREZ, Yahima (POR)
SOL, Kyong (PRK) vs. MBALLA ATANGANA, Hortence Vanessa (CMR)

Final Results
1. MALONGA, Madeleine (FRA)
2. TCHEUMEO, Audrey (FRA)
3. SOL, Kyong (PRK)
5. MBALLA ATANGANA, Hortence Vanessa (CMR)
5. RAMIREZ, Yahima (POR)
7. DMITRIEVA, Anastasiya (RUS)

+78kg: KIM Tops the Medal Podium in Samsun

Top seeded and world number 8, Svitlana IAROMKA (UKR) had a perfect start until she was defeated by the Korean KIM Jiyoun in the semi-final. The last win for KIM on the occasion of a Grand Prix was in 2014 (Jeju). In the final she was opposed to the surprise of the day, Melissa MOJICA (PUR), who was coached by Jessica GARCIA, who we interviewed yesterday as she just finished the first level of the IJF Academy. Fight after fight, during the preliminary rounds, Melissa MOJICA proved that today was a good day for her. In the semi-final she was opposed to the second top seeded athlete, Jasmin KUELBS (GER), silver medallist of the last European Games. Dominated, and ahead by a shido, she did not abandon her task though and kept moving forward until she changed direction to score a beautiful waza-ari, that surprised everyone, including her.

A first shido was given to MOJICA after a little more than a minute of fight in the final. One minute later, the Puerto Rico athlete was penalised again for passivity as KIM was clearly more active and just before entering the last minute, both athletes received a shido for passivity, giving a clear option to the Korean for the final victory. In the last attack MOJICA was not strong enough to score and it is finally KIM who stepped on the top of the podium in Turkey.

The first bronze medal fight opposed Marine ERB (FRA), who is still hoping for an Olympic qualification in a category that in France is dominated by Emilie ANDEOL, and Jasmin KUELBS (GER). ERB was penalised after less than a minute for false attack and again a little later. Those two shido against her were enough to give the victory to KUELBS.

The two Ukrainian Iryna KINDZERSKA, bronze medallist in Tokyo last December, and Svitlana IAROMKA, winner of the Baku Grand Slam last year, met for the second bronze medal. After an observation round between the two Ukrainian, IAROMKA engaged a soto-makikomi technique for a yuko that she immediately followed on the floor for an immobilisation for ippon.

KIM, Jiyoun (KOR) vs. MOJICA, Melissa (PUR)

Bronze Medal Fights
ERB, Marine (FRA) vs. KUELBS, Jasmin (GER)
KINDZERSKA, Iryna (UKR) vs. IAROMKA, Svitlana (UKR)

Final Results
1. KIM, Jiyoun (KOR)
2. MOJICA, Melissa (PUR)
3. IAROMKA, Svitlana (UKR)
3. KUELBS, Jasmin (GER)
5. ERB, Marine (FRA)
7. CERIC, Larisa (BIH)
7. WEISS, Carolin (GER)


-90kg: Tactical KHALMURZAEV Wins Gold in Samsun

The only top seeded athletes (6th) of the category to enter the final was Mammadali MEHDIYEV (AZE), who had a difficult semi-final against the veteran of the day, Tiago CAMILO (BRA). 16 years ago, a record, the Brazilian was already present in Sydney, but it was in the -73kg weight category, where he obtained a silver medal losing to the Italian Giuseppe Maddaloni. 8 years later he won the bronze in Beijing in -81kg and in London finished 5th. Still at the top level, Camilo was close to enter the final when MEHDIYEV scored the yuko that opened the doors to a possible place on the top of the podium to the Azeri. In the final he was opposed to Khusen KHALMURZAEV, who was not among the favourites of the day.

After 45 seconds both athletes were penalised with a shido for blocking their opponent. One minute later, it was MEHDIYEV’s turn to be penalised again for avoiding the fight. The next penalty given to both athletes, put the Azeri in danger, only one penalty away from the disqualification. Concluding a very tactical match, KHALMURZAEV could keep the penalty difference in his benefit for a first Grand Prix victory for the Russian.

The first bronze medal fight saw Nikoloz SHERAZADISHVILI (ESP) and Tiago CAMILO (BRA) facing to step on the podium. After three minutes, SHERAZADISHVILI was the first to score a waza-ari with an opportunistic counterattack. But what a fighter! Two seconds before the final gong, CAMILO once again dropped on his knees for a superb drop-seoi-nage that was counted as a waza-ari, opening the doors of the golden score. A few seconds later, the Brazilian hooked the foot of SHERAZADISHVILI with a ko-uchi-gari for a second waza-ari, offering him the bronze medal.

In the second bronze medal fight it was Patryk CIECHOMSKI (POL) who was opposed to Dilshod CHORIEV (UZB). CHORIEV scored the first waza-ari with a left handed hane-goshi technique, close to a uchi-mata. CIECHOMSKI had to take some risks. The Uzbek took the opportunity to counterattack the weak uchi-mata of the Polish to score a second waza-ari to conclude the fight. This is the sixth Grand Prix medal for CHORIEV.

KHALMURZAEV, Khusen (RUS) vs. MEHDIYEV, Mammadali (AZE)

Bronze Medal Fights
CIECHOMSKI, Patryk (POL) vs. CHORIEV, Dilshod (UZB)

Final Results
2. MEHDIYEV, Mammadali (AZE)
3. CAMILO, Tiago (BRA)
3. CHORIEV, Dilshod (UZB)
7. NHABALI, Quedjau (UKR)
7. YESSEN, Samat (KAZ)

-100kg: The Youth and Determination of GVINIASHVILI Rewarded

The -100kg was announced as being a very interesting category and it was indeed. The world number one was defeated by Beka GVINIASHVILI (GEO), who is about to succeed in his bet to get qualified to the Games in the -100kg. The 20 year old judoka was Junior World Champion last year in -90kg, but in Georgia this weight class is in the hands of Varlam LIPARTELIANI. Thus GVINIASHVILI decided to try in the -100kg and apparently, at least today, that worked very well. In the final he faced Rafael BUZACARINI, world number 29. Among the other top seeded athletes of the day who were eliminated, were Toma NIKIFOROV (BEL), Maxim RAKOV (KAZ), Henk GROL or Elkhan MAMMADOV, the 2013 World Champion, the only big names of the category.

The first strong attack came from the Georgian side as GVINIASHVILI launched in two phases a powerful koshi-waza for a first yuko. In the meanwhile, BUZACARINI was penalised two times for passivity. One minute prior to the end, the Georgian was penalised with a first shido for passivity as the content pressure of the Brazilian started to weaken GVINIASHVILI’s defence. But the young athlete is a rock and despite a long competition day, he secured an important victory here in Samsun that might offer him the ticket to Rio de Janeiro next summer.

The first bronze medal fight saw CIRJENICS Miklos (HUN) facing Jorge FONSECA (POR), already bronze medallist last week in Georgia. Due to an injury FONSECA could not compete, and CIRJENICS won the bronze medal.

In the second bronze medal fight KHUTAG Tsogtgerel (MGL) was opposed to Ivan REMARENCO (UAE) but due to an injury REMARENCO could not compete and the bronze medal went to KHUTAG Tsogtgerel.


Bronze Medal Fights
CIRJENICS, Miklos (HUN) vs. FONSECA, Jorge (POR)
KHUTAG, Tsogtgerel (MGL) vs. REMARENCO, Ivan (UAE)

Final Results
3. CIRJENICS, Miklos (HUN)
3. KHUTAG, Tsogtgerel (MGL)
5. FONSECA, Jorge (POR)
7. FLETCHER, Benjamin (GBR)
7. RAKOV, Maxim (KAZ)

+100kg: 18 Gold Medal in a Row for the King Riner    

The attraction of the day, once again, was the presence of Teddy RINER (FRA). Invincible since 2010, the French came to Samsun to fight, to test himself, after he had to withdraw from the Paris Grand Slam, last February, due to an injury. Having the passive silhouette of the French giant moving around the tatami always attracts more attention. Calm, sober in his judo, solid on his positions, dynamic on his leg, nothing seemed to bother him during the first rounds. He successively defeated Juhan METTIS (EST), Daniel ALLERSTORFER (AUT) and David MOURA in the semi-final, all by ippon. But RINER was here to experiment and not to rush through all the matches within a few seconds. Thus, comparing to other events, he spent quite a lot of time on the tatami. The ultimate favourite of the Rio Olympics, will definitely be hard to beat. Since Teddy Riner lost in the final of the Open World Championships in Tokyo in 2010 against KAMIKAWA Daiki (JPN), the French won more than 80 fights and more than 70% of them by ippon.

It is a courageous MATIASHVILI who stepped on the tatami, jauntily trying his luck. But after a couple of strong attacks, the RINER’s pressure slowly increased and the Georgian was penalised with a shido. The end of the fight was approaching and there were still only two shido in the advantage of the French. It is only on the last second that RINER was able to launch his uchi-mata for a yuko just on the edge of the fighting area. With this victory, RINER adds an 18th victory in a row to his incredible prize list and despite the courage of MATIASHVILI, he remains the king.

After the final, Teddy Riner declared: “Every competition is important. It was not my best tournament today, but I’m happy and I know what I have to improve until the Olympic Games. Honestly I didn’t expect that in the final. MATIASHVILI was really fighting and I love that, I need that. He took risks. Congratulations to him. I have put the injuries aside now. The next step for me is the European Championship and after I don’t know yet. I might take part in an other competition prior to the Games but it’s not decided yet. What is sure is that I’ll keep working hard, because I have a dream and that dream in 2016 is to become Olympic Champion again.“

The first bronze medal fight opposed the European Games champion, Adam OKRUASHVILI (GEO) and Iurii KRAKOVETSKII (KGZ). After one minute and thirty seconds of observation without strong attacks, both competitors were penalised with a shido, and a few seconds later, it was OKRUASHVILI only who was penalised. But the small shido advantage of KRAKOVETSKII was not valid for very long and within a few second the Kirghiz was penalised two times, reaching three penalties. Forty seconds before the final gong, after a vacillating situation, OKRUASHVILI was finally able to overthrow KRAKOVETSKII for a waza-ari that was concluded on the floor for ippon and the ninth Grand Prix medal for the Georgian.

The second bronze medal fight saw Rafael SILVA (BRA) and David MOURA (BRA) facing off for a place on the podium. But more than that, for a place for the Olympics as well probably. At least today’s result will count. If Brazil is automatically qualified for the Games, which one of the heavy weight will represent the host country in Rio is not decided yet. After 50 seconds, SILVA was penalised a first time for passivity. A moment later, it was MOURA’s turn to collect a shido for passivity. Neither of the athletes being actually able to put the other one in danger, they had to enter into the golden score. 51 seconds were finally necessary for Silva to score a yuko with a small ko-uchi-gari.

RINER, Teddy (FRA) vs. MATIASHVILI, Levani (GEO)

Bronze Medal Fights
SILVA, Rafael (BRA) vs. MOURA, David (BRA)

Final Results
1. RINER, Teddy (FRA)
3. SILVA, Rafael (BRA)
5. MOURA, David (BRA)
7. BOR, Barna (HUN)

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