10 April 2024


European Judo Championships Seniors Zagreb 2024


This year will be the first time that the Senior European Championships will be held in ‘Croatia’, as in October of 1990, Dubrovnik held the Championships for men and women in the former Yugoslavia.

Croatia has now become a stronghold of both the European and IJF World Judo Tour, hosting Grand Prix and World Championship events in recent times and can now add the European Judo prime event to that roster. This of course doesn’t discount the 2005 Junior European Championships or 2008 U23 European Championships in Zagreb, the 2020 Junior and U23 Championships already held in Porec following the break caused by the pandemic, or the Cadet Championships in 2022 which also took place in the idyllic region.

Between 1951 in Paris, and 1973 in Madrid, European titles had been earned by men, but this changed in 1974 when the women’s event was introduced in Genoa, Italy. This monumental change was a huge step in a positive direction, and after 12 editions, the European Championships became a mixed event, bringing men and women together in 1987 where it all began, in Paris.

This year marks the 73rd edition for men, but is the 50th anniversary for women, and on this incredible anniversary, there are many female competitors who could make a historic win, nine of which will compete for the host nation. The impressive line up includes double World Champion, Barbara MATIC (-70kg), World Vice Champion, Lara CVJETKO (-70kg), as well as Ana Viktorija PULJIZ (-52kg) and Katarina KRISTO (-63kg) who have exploded on to the IJF World Judo Tour in 2024, claiming two Grand Slam medals each.

In this Olympic year, there is still an impressive entry in this prime event, with 442 athletes registered from 42 nations, including eight world ranked number one judoka.


Author: Thea Cowen