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French teen Romane Dicko strikes Grand Prix gold
1 Apr 2018 19:10
Romane Dicko of France reigned supreme in Tbilisi to claim her first IJF World Judo Tour title. The 18-year-old starlet won all four of her contests without shipping a single score to complete the second part of the French team’s women’s heavyweight double having seen teammate Audrey Tcheumeo win U78kg gold.
Junior European champion Dicko looks a ready made long-term replacement for Olympic champion Emilie Andeol (FRA) who retired after Rio 2016. European champion Maryna Slutskaya (BLR) was brushed aide in the final with harai-makikomi opening the scoring for a waza-ari and Dicko trapped the Belarus judoka in osaekomi for 10 seconds and gold. The result completed a remarkable performance from France who won five out of the seven women’s gold medals available.
In the first semi-final Slutskaya dropped under Zagreb Grand Prix bronze medallist Anne Fatoumata M Bairo (FRA) to throw with a seoi-nage for ippon and a place in the +78kg gold medal contest. In the second semi-final Dicko downed The Hague Grand Prix silver medallist Sandra Jablonskyte (LTU) with two harai-makikomi efforts earning her a waza-ari on each occasion.
The first bronze medal was awarded to Jablonskyte who profited from the wastefulness of Agadir Grand Prix bronze medallist Ivana Sutalo (CRO) who was penalised on three occasions and was disqualified.
The second bronze medal was won by M Bairo after former Tashkent Grand Prix winner Ivana Maranic (CRO) was penalised three times. Maranic started well with an ashi-waza counter for a waza-ari as she showed good foot work but with two minutes left the contest was wrapped up. M Bairo was declared the winner after her opponent touched the leg of the Frenchwoman for a third shido as Croatian missed out on a +78kg medal.
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DongHan Gwak (KOR)
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