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Distria Krasniqi showcases Kosovo's talent with gold in Samsun

27 Mar 2015 18:55

 by Mark Pickering - IJF    IJF Media Team / International Judo Federation
20150327_Samsun_KRASNIQI, Distria (KOS)

Politicians, Athletes, fans and not in the least Distria Krasniqi of Kosovo cheered about her major victory at the Grand Prix in Samsun. In the same category as Majlinda Kelmendi Kosovo has another talent. Winner of the last Grand Prix, one week ago in Tbilisi, Jaana SUNDBERG (FIN) came to Turkey full of confidence but she was quickly defeated by Larisa FLORIAN (ROU) in the preliminary rounds.

This was the perfect scenario for the experienced Ilse HEYLEN (BEL) to enter for the second time in a row (after Tbilisi last weekend) into the final of a major international event. In the final she faced the Kosovan, Distria KRASNIQI, who demonstrated throughout the competition that double world champion Majlinda KELMENDI is not the only top level athlete of the country to be able to reach World Judo Tour podiums.


Having exactly the double of age of her opponent, Ilse HEYLEN remains one of the toughest athletes of the category. Never tired of winning medals at the international level, the Belgian shows that when the desire to win still exists everything is possible. But today, Distria KRASNIQI proved with her young age that she also represents the future generation of champions, after having thrown HEYLEN with a o-soto-gari for waza-ari.


Distria KRASNIQI said: “I feel really happy. Everything went perfectly well today. I know that Majlinda Kelmendi is already to world number one in the category and I am not here to challenge her. She is the best. But it’s good to have some opposition.“


The first bronze medal fight saw Agata PERENC (POL) and Kelly EDWARDS (GBR) fighting for a medal. The medal went to Agata PERENC (POL) who scored a waza-ari with a strong arai-akikomi. Jaana SUNDBERG (FIN) and Gili COHEN (ISR) having been defeated in the early rounds, the next favourite to enter the final block was ADIYASAMBUU Tsolmon (MGL).


In the second bronze medal fight, she was opposed to Lisa KEARNEY (IRL), world number 30 and only owner of continental open medals so far. After 35 seconds, both athletes were penalised with a shido for passivity. ADIYASAMBUU was penalised a second time for a false attack, giving a small advantage to the Irish fighter. Even if several more penalties were distributed on both sides, Lisa KEARNEY, who had already one foot on the podium, could finally totally step on it.

Related judoka and events

Related Judo Photos

  • Distria Krasniqi (KOS) - Grand Prix Samsun (2015, TUR) - © Emir Incegul, Turkish Judo Federation
  • Distria Krasniqi (KOS) - Grand Prix Samsun (2015, TUR) - © IJF Media Team, International Judo Federation
  • Distria Krasniqi (KOS), Ilse Heylen (BEL), Lisa Kearney (IRL), Agata Perenc (POL) - Grand Prix Samsun (2015, TUR) - © IJF Media Team, International Judo Federation

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