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Deguchi chooses Canada, aims for Tokyo Olympics
13 Mar 2017 08:40
Christa Deguchi, 2014 World Junior Championship runner-up from Japan and 2013 bronze medallist, is going to fight for Canada. The 21-year old Deguchi will be aiming for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The application is already submitted to the All Japan Judo Federation. While continuing to practice as a member of Yamanashi Gakuin University, she will aim to be a representative for Canada.
Deguchi started judo at three years-old and showed very early promise, winning prizes at levels beyond her age. Deguchi’s father is from Canada; her mother is Japanese and she has a dual citizenship. Deguchi commented very succinctly: "I want to go out with the Canadian side for the Tokyo Olympics."
Deguchi won the All Japan Student Championships in October and was third in the Kodokan Cup in 2015. With the Japanese junior team, she won the World team title. At MikiHouse she is in the same school as Kanae Yamabe who won a bronze medal in the Rio Olympics.
Deguchi was born in Nagano and was considered as one of the biggest talents in her junior time, but the competition is stiff. However, Canada also has top-level competitors at U57kg. That category is the strongest with Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard and Jessica Klimkait, both world class athletes or at least getting nearly so. Beauchemin was previously fighting U63kg, where Stefanie Tremblay is the highest seeded athlete.
Deguchi fought Beauchemin-Pinard in 2013 at the World Junior Championships; Beauchemin-Pinard won that contest in the quarter final. The Canadian finished with silver behind Arleta Podolak and Deguchi came back in the repechage to win bronze, followed by silver the next year.
In other recent news, 21-year old Stefanie Arissa Koyama moved to Pan America and is now fighting for Brazil successfully. This weekend she won the Grand Slam of Baku U48kg.
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