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Loic Korval retires from judo but keeps connected with his sport
18 Jul 2017 10:00
Former European Champion and World bronze medallist Loic Korval retired as a top judoka. Last weekend, the 29-year old Frenchman announced his retirement on his own Facebook page with a 6-minute video.
Korval participated in last week's European Cup in Saarbrücken in the U73kg category, where he withdrew from the quarter final match against Igor Wandtke with pain in his ankle. It appears that Korval is unable to maintain his motivation to continue high-level competition.
Korval was discovered quite late with a gold medal at the Belgian Open in Vise in 2009 in a good year where he won a few World Cup medals. In 2010, the big work started with successful Grand Slams and Grand Prix appearances. He was on the silver French team at the European Team Championships and was selected for the World Championships, where he won bronze in Tokyo. In 2011, he became the French champion and was in a continuous battle with David Larose, who went to the Olympic Games and 2013 Worlds. Loic won bronze at the Grand Slam in Paris in 2013 and 2014 he went on to defeat Larose in the European Championship final. He finished fifth in the 2014 Worlds after a heroic fight with Khan Magomedov. In 2015 he took the European Games title with the French team and silver in the individual event, still U66kg. At the Grand Slam this year he made his international debut U73kg and fought current elite fighters.
Since then he was in a another battle. He was suspended under the accusation of missing three doping tests in 2014 and was absent from the Olympic Games. His constant fighting with the Federation and his switch to U73kg raised barriers for Korval that he couldn’t face. Korval now has new challenges: to travel the world to spread the knowledge of judo and to learn. Korval clearly hasn't given up his beloved sport and will always be connected.
Korval was a colourful athlete, always in for a talk, even in bad times, and always prepared for a good battle. Some of his most frequent fights were against Mikhail Pulyaev, Georgii Zantaraia, Khashbaatar Tsagaanbaatar, Mirzahid Farmonov, Kenneth van Gansbeke, and Kamal Khan-Magomedov.
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