The last category of the Grand Slam in Tashkent was once again dominated by Asian countries with Kim Sungmin (KOR) and Kageura Kokoro (JPN), the man who defeated the King Teddy Riner, on the occasion of the last Paris Grand Slam, last year.
Half way through the final, Kageura was already penalized twice as he looked totally dominated by Kim. But that's maybe when the Japanese are so strong. After several unsuccessful attempts Kageura launched a last drop-seo-nage that scored a waza-ari just before the final gong of the category and of the tournament.
An other Kim of Korea, Kim Minjong, was confronted with Azeri judoka Ushangi Kokauri pour une place sur le podium. Kim was the first in action, scoring a waza-ari on tani-otoshi. The following attack was clearly a ippon as KIM executed a perfect o-uchi-gari that Kokauri will remember. This is the seventh medal in a grand slam for the Korean.
The last bronze medal contest of the tournament, saw Temur Rakhimov (TJK) and Erik Abramov (GER) competing for a medal and very valuable ranking points. Abramov scored the first waza-ari with a strong and powerful morote-seoi-nage, followed a few seconds later by a counterattack for a second waza-ari and a first medal in a grand slam.
In just a few weeks, the world circuit will stop in Tbilisi, Georgia, before Antalya in Turkey and Kazan in Russia and at the beginning of June the International Judo Federation will organise its world championship in Budapest, Hungary. If all eyes are already on the Tokyo Games, the events of the World Judo Tour, by the summer, will attract the attention of judo fans from every continent.