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Fairy tail title for Toma Nikiforov who claims the medal and the girl

5 Nov 2017 17:10

   Carlos Ferreira, FFB / Fédération Francophone Belge de Judo

Toma Nikiforov was the happiest man at the sports Arena in the occasion of the Belgian Championships in Herstal. Nikiforov won his first senior Belgian title in his career and took the opportunity to ask his girlfriend Nica Antonis to marry her… and she said yes.

Everybody knew as the organization had scheduled his final as the last fight of the Championships. Everybody but Nica Antonis, herself Belgian Champion in 2013. Toma had to win his last match obviously against Jelle Hoste and he succeed. Not long after that both where overwhelmed by emotions but the 2015 World bronze medallist clearly enjoying this special day where brother Dilyan Nikiforov captured bronze U90kg, a true family party.

Sami Chouchi won his third Belgian title in his career. World Junior Champion Matthias Casse didn’t participate. Chouchi bested Oman Hanci in the final. Dutchman Mistral Janssen won his second Belgian title. Janssen studies in Belgium and prolonged his title of last year after defeating a tough opponent in Joachim Bottieau. All three Bottieau brothers medalled in Herstal, the city where the Belgian Open for women will take place in February instead of Arlon.

Denis Caro won his first Belgian title U73kg. Kenneth van Gansbeke captured his second title. He prolonged his title, and sixth national medal as he finished with silver three times since 2008.

Nicolas Demuyder was a surprise gold medallist U60kg in the final against Narek Sarikyan. Naoufal EZ Zerrad and Jos Bruggeman won bronze, Jorre Verstraeten didn’t participate. In the heavyweight category British Peter Vincent won the Belgian title. Vincent trains in Belgium and is always a welcome guest at national championships, trains more or less exclusively in Belgian and aims to gain the Belgian citizenship in the near future. He bested Tamerlan Dunaev whilst Benjamin Harmegnies won bronze.

Anne-Sophie Jura won her third Belgian title in a dream final against world Junior bronze medallist Lois Petit. Another World Junior medallist won the title U57kg, Mina Libeer (19) and Amber Ryheul (19), another successful junior, captured  her first Belgian title U52kg.

Belgium have a great junior generation again and the four medals at the World Junior Championships recently in Zagreb says it all. Where the Flemish judoka are still impressing internationally, now the Walloon judoka are coming up strongly and this championship was mainly dominated by the Walloon judoka. One of the current eye-catchers is Gabriella Willems (20) who prolonged last year’s title in a final against Lola Mansour (23). Willems won world Junior bronze two weeks ago.

Lise Luyckfasseel is a showing consistent performances U63kg. With her third title and fourth final since 2010 she is one of the more experienced and successful judoka in the current generation. In the final she defeated Dutch Lizzy Gevers. Allison Hollevoet won the title U78kg and Rania El Kilali took her first Belgian title in the women’s heavyweights.

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  • Toma Nikiforov (BEL) - Belgian Championships Herstal (2017, BEL) - © Carlos Ferreira, FFB, Fédération Francophone Belge de Judo
  • Mistral Janssen (NED), Joachim Bottieau (BEL) - Belgian Championships Herstal (2017, BEL) - © Carlos Ferreira, FFB, Fédération Francophone Belge de Judo
  • Gabriella Willems (BEL), Lola Mansour (BEL) - Belgian Championships Herstal (2017, BEL) - © Carlos Ferreira, FFB, Fédération Francophone Belge de Judo

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Result City Date
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