Judoka of the week: Ayvengo Shabiev (RUS)Last week at the European U17 cadet Championships in Koper a lot of ippons were scored. In the tough weight class of the men’s U60kg even 69% of all 36 matches were won by ippon. Ayvengo Shabiev (RUS) became European champion with five ippons and was part of the success of the Russian male team in Koper. A unique streak of wins and seven European titles, even eight finals by Russia's male team, a compliment to the whole team, including the women.
Foremost we would like to pick out Ayvengo Shabiev as judoka of the week.
Not only because his victory in Koper, but Shabiev is one of the greatest talents at the moment. Nearly unbeatable in Europe. Only in March at the International Masters in Bremen, he was defeated and finished third. Naohisa Takato became the winner in Bremen. Shabiev became second last year at the Europeans in Sarajevo where he lost to Vugar Shirinli (AZE) U55kg. In the U60kg category he won international tournaments like the Top cadets in Kiev, Berlin and Szczyrk.
He’s just 15 years young just like most of his teammates last weekend. Will it lead to success in the seniors? Most successful Russian U17 European medalists are Arsen Galstyan who won the European title in Tbilisi this year and Natalia Kuzyutina who became European senior champion in 2009 as well after winning the European U17 title in 2004 and 2005. They are the exceptions and were the two youngest of 14 European champions this year.
The comparison to Arsen Galstyan: Became European U20 champion two years after his U17 title in 2005 and one year later in 2008 he won the World junior title. He’s now the best positioned Russian in the U60 IJF World Ranking and ready for the Olympic qualification battle. What a scenario to work towards for Ayvengo Shabiev.