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Paris debutant Sarah Asahina stuns Olympic elite to earn second Grand Slam title
12 Feb 2017 20:55
At the Grand Slam of Paris, Yamabe Kanae of Japan lost to teammate Asahina Sarah as the Tokai University student put herself in the driving seat for a Tokyo 2020 berth and selection for the World Championships 2017 in Budapest, Hungary.
The scoreless contest came to a conclusion when World bronze medallist Yamabe received a third shido for passivity and hansoku-make. Asahina, who started judo at the Kodokan and still lives around the corner from the traditional home of the sport, was supported by her parents in Paris and can is already fulfilling their hopes and dreams with this result: it is just the beginning for the 20-year-old.
In the first semi-final, Rio 2016 Olympic champion Emilie Andeol of France was stunned by Asahina Sarah who overpowered the French judoka with alarming ease in 53 seconds for a place in the +78kg final. In the second semi-final, Yamabe Kanae defeated Eva Bisseni of France to book an all-Japanese final.
The first bronze medal was claimed by Asian Championships winner Kim Minjeong (KOR) by the margin of a waza-ari against Eva Bisseni after four minutes.
The second bronze medal contest was won by Andeol who recovered from her semi-final loss to deny Kalanina (UKR) in golden score by a shido.
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Takamasa Anai (JPN)