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Briton Natalie Powell overcomes Marhinde Verkerk in U78kg final
28 Oct 2017 18:10
For Powell, the result - as well as the 1,000 ranking points that were up for grabs - means she will move up to world No 1 in the weight division when the new rankings are announced next week. Powell arrived at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam ranked second in the world behind Brazilian Mayra Aguiar.
Aguiar went down to Verkerk in the semi-finals and got the better of Russian Antonina Shmeleva in the repechage to settle for e bronze with the Dutch world No 3 Guusje Steenhuis.
“I’m absolutely delighted with the result,” Powell said. “The success was all about the hard work that went in while preparing for Abu Dhabi.
“The Grand Slam Tokyo is next for me and I plan to spend a few weeks training there to build on my technique before the competition in December.”
Powell’s medal was the third for Britain at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam after silver and bronze for Lucy Renshall (63kg) and Nekoda Davis (57kg).
Russia topped the medals table with three gold, one silver and five bronze medals, followed by the Netherlands (2-2-1), Mongolia (2-1-0), Great Britain (1-1-1), Belgium (1-1-0), IJF (1-05), Spain (1-0-1), Italy (1-0-0), France (1-0-0) and Sweden (1-0-0).
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Jian Van Wijland (NED)