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Nakamura Misato resets world order U52kg in Tokyo
4 Dec 2015 09:05
The current World Champion, Nakamura Misato of Japan was only seeded number two at this Grand Slam. But that did not bother her to find her way to the final, after the top seeded athlete, Annabelle Euranie (FRA), was eliminated by a waza-ari by another Japanese Shishime Ai, bronze medallist in Paris in October, in the quarter-final. Never really in danger, Nakamura controlled the whole final against Shishime who was penalised three times, offering a sixth crown to the world champion in a Grand Slam.
After a tense fight between the two contenders to the French Olympic qualification, Annabelle Euranie and bronze medallist of the London Games, Priscilla Gneto, it was the veteran Euranie who qualified for the right to fight for the bronze medal. For a place on the podium, she met the 2010 World champion, Nishida Yuka, but that did not scare the French fighter, who took advantage of her height to take the lead with a left handed uchi-mata for waza-ari. She then just had to control the fight, which she did pretty well, as Nishida only scored a yuko, not enough the change the final result. With this medal, Euranie puts a serious option on the Olympic qualification.
In top form in the U52kg category, Japan's team placed its fourth athlete in position to win a medal since the silver medallist of the last World Masters in Rabat, Hashimoto Yuki, faced the German Mareen Kraeh. Kraeh should have known to be careful on the floor. The Japanese squad and especially the women are well known for that powerful skills particularly with immobilisations and without any surprise, Hashimoto added one more medal to the already long Japanese prize list, with an immobilisation for ippon on Kraeh.
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Harry Lovell-Hewitt (GBR)