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Transition queen Kayra Sayit takes first female European title for Turkey

23 Apr 2016 20:20

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The fairy tail of the unseeded Turkish heavyweight Kayra Sayit is not over yet. The 28-year Sayit won the European title in the autumn of her career. Sayit switched from France to Turkey and changed her name from Mathé to Sayit and got more chances to fight internationally. Despite the competition in Turkey in the weight category she was able to take the European title with Belkis Zehra Kaya who won the bronze.

Sayit judoka began her day against Szigetvari Mercedesz. Her victory win brought her to title holder, and former team mate Emilie Andeol of France. A single penalty, was sufficient to move Sayit to the semi final. In the semi she fought Santa Pakenyte of Lithuania who beat Kindzerska and Weiss, a victory on its own. But Pakenyte couldn’t prevent Sayit going to her first final.

The final against number two seed, Svitlana Iaromka of the Ukraine was decided quickly by waza ari and immediately followed up with her transition skills again as she managed to secure an osei komi for the ippon. Sayit: “You know, I got up this morning and I said to myself I just want to be the best for today. I am really happy and it is really important that I won the gold medal today but what is more important for me is to be able to achieve my dream and to aim to win the gold medal in Rio. All in all, it was a beautiful day today and I hope there is a bright future ahead of me” she said to the EJU reporters.

 “I never really had any big emotions with regard to this contest. My intention was not at all to prove anything to anyone because it’s not the first time I’ve her face and it’s not the first time that I’ve defeated Andeol. I didn’t come here to beat her in particular, I came here to win for myself and I just wanted to show my best today”, said Sayit.

This Olympic cycle European Champions

2016      Mayra Sayit (TUR)

2015      Emilie Andeol (FRA)

2014      Emilie Andeol (FRA)

2013      Lucija Polavder (SLO)

2012      Elena Ivaschenko (RUS)

Sayit won the 8th European title ever for Turkey, three won by Selim Tataroglu, most won by athletes who were born in another country.

Belkis Kaya defeated Pakenyte for bronze and both Germans Jasmin Kuelbs and Carolin Weiss fought for the second bronze, captured by Kuelbs who won her third consecutive European medal since 2014.

Short Profile Kayra Sayit

Former Ketty Mathe married in Turkey in February in 2015 and fights for Turkey as Kayra Sayit. It brought her luck and she won the Grand Prix of Budapest. She won gold at the Grand Prix in Tbilisi in 2016. Mathe had won a few World Cups before in Rome and Moscow and won big medals with France. She won European bronze in 2007 for France, but in 2016 she had the ultimate performance with a gold medal in Kazan.

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