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Gjakova wins second Grand Prix title as Kosovo reign on day one
17 Nov 2017 19:05
Nora Gjakova of Kosovo won her second Grand Prix gold medal to send her country to the top of the medal table. The 25-year-old defeated Dusseldorf Grand Prix winner Theresa Stoll (GER) in the -57kg final as Kosovo coach Driton Toni Kuka was again working his magic with their accomplished women’s team who all live and train in the same street in the European nation.
A third shido for Stoll ended her bid for glory as European Championships bronze medallist Gjakova celebrated and took a selfie with her coach and the IJF President Marius Vizer. The Kosovo star will now improve on her world number 10 ranking with two major events still to come in 2017 as the season moves on to Japan for the Tokyo Grand Slam before concluding with the World Judo Masters in St. Petersburg, Russia.
In the first semi-final Gjakova recorded a straightforward win over 19-year-old Junior Worlds bronze medallist Mina Libeer (BEL) with a sankaku-gatame hold down. In the second semi-final Stoll defeated world number 102 Martina Lo Giudice (ITA) by ippon having already scored two waza-ari in a one-sided contest.
The first bronze medal was awarded to Lo Giudice who defeated Tashkent Grand Prix winner Anna Borowska (POL) with a probing ouchi-gari after two minutes and 44 seconds of golden score. The Italian judoka, who was fighting for an IJF World Judo Tour medal for the first time, had more stamina than her opponent in added time and offered a neat conclusion to the contest with her ashi-waza.
The second bronze medal was won by European U23 Championships winner Amelie Stoll (GER) who surpassed Libeer to finish as one of the medallists on the opening day. A waza-ari score from an ouchi-gari was the only score in the four minute contest as Amelie made sure that Germany’s twin sisters would both be on the podium.
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