Home » Judo news
The latest Judo News offered by JudoInside.com
Israeli Judo highlights European medals with Grand Prix from 2019
29 Apr 2018 10:05
The European Judo Championships came to a close in Tel Aviv on Saturday night, with Israel’s representatives ending the event with four medals, three bronzes and Sagi Muki’s gold.
Due to the success of the championships, Israel Judo Association chairman Moshe Ponte announced on Saturday that Tel Aviv is set to host one of judo’s Grand Prix events starting from 2019.
Sagi Muki scaled the top of the podium in the U81kg competition on Friday, being crowned as European champion for the second time. The 25-year-old claimed the gold medal in the U73kg contest at the continental championships in Baku in 2015, and proved that he can compete and beat Europe’s best in his weight-class.
Muki came within a single win of the podium at the Rio 2016 Olympics, eventually finishing in fifth place after overcoming two slipped discs and a serious ankle injury.
He initially struggled for results after moving up U81kg, but everything came together for him at Tel Aviv’s Convention Center on Friday.
“I suffered an injury that put my career under real threat,” said Muki, who defeated Belgium’s Sami Chouchi in the final in golden score. “I couldn’t wash my face. Couldn’t tie my shoelaces. My mother helped me put on socks. All of this happened to me after I had already been crowed European Championships and just a short time before the Olympics. I worked really hard to be able to face heavier opponents and I dreamed of this moment.”
An emotional Muki didn’t manage to sing the words of Hatikvah when the national anthem played for the only time in the championships. “This is the first time that I cried like this and was so emotional after winning,” he explained. “Everything I experienced after Rio made this moment so special.”
Israel’s fourth and final medal of the championships was won by Peter Paltchik in the men’s U100kg event on Saturday. Paltchik lost to Cyrille Maret of France in the semifinals, but bounced back with a win over Niiaz Bilalov in the battle for the bronze. “I always believed in myself,” said Paltchik. “I had one leg in the grave after injuring my shoulder. I felt like a gladiator and the crowd gave me so much energy.”
Gefen Primo and Tal Flicker both also won bronze medals in the opening day of competition on Friday.
There was also some disappointment for the hosts on Saturday, with Olympic medalist Ori Sasson already being knocked out in his first bout. Sasson, who took a bronze medal in Rio, received a bye into the second round but was then beaten by Russian Tamerlan Bashaev.
Related judoka and events
Related Judo Photos
Related Judo News
Russian Grand Prix expert Alan Khubetsov denied Japan in the final of the Budapest Grand Prix, the runaway leaders of the medal table, one more title in Hungary as he outfought Tunis Grand Prix bronze medallist Kohara Kenya (JPN) in the -81kg final. After an even four minutes, golden score was required to separate the finalists who accumulated two shidos apiece in added time. Read more
Russia became the winner of the medal table at the European Championship in Tel Aviv. The Russians won four gold medals, France was second with three gold medals, all in the women’s division. Read more
The home crowd in Tel Aviv had high expectation for Sagi Muki of Israel to win gold in a relative new weight category U81kg. Muki won European Games gold in 2015 U73kg but could convert success in his category U81kg. However with the European top present in Tel Aviv that assignment was not easy. Read more
The IJF World Judo Tour has arrived in the Middle East for the fourth Grand Slam of the season as Olympic and world champions enter the fray at the IPIC Arena from Thursday 26 to Saturday 28 October. The new about the Israeli team dominated the start of the Grand Slam. The Israeli team can only fight under the IJF flag in the UAE. The team of twelve athletes arrived in Abu Dhabi one hour later than planned as the visas were not available and the flight was gone by then. Read more
Israelian Sagi Muki won gold for the first time in his new weight category with a competent display in the U81kg category despite not reaching his usual levels of spectacular ippon judo. Muki, who was fifth at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the U73kg category, faced former Asian Championships winner Nyamsuren Dagvasuren (MGL) in the final in a first meeting between the pair. Read more
Mathieu Vankerkem (BEL)