Nazar VISKOV came of age on 31 May. According to national law, he is considered an adult. In Judo, the 18-year-old Ukrainian passed his maturity test on Friday afternoon in Potsdam. “I knew I would make it in the top-3 again. I won bronze three times at the European Championships and also at the Youth Games (EYOF). I was absolutely sure in the morning that I would win another medal today…”
But Nazar didn’t want to settle for that this time. “I was seeded number one and was the clear favourite. To win bronze for the fifth time, the fourth European Championship bronze medal, would have been a disappointment.”
The Ukrainian was only eliminated early in The Hague at the European Junior Championships. Otherwise, he finished on the podium in all (six) of his appearances this season. “I’ve done a number of training camps, including in Spain – I’ve often met up with Luis Barroso Lopez. I’ve been at home in Kiev for the last three weeks, training mostly on my own.”
His father Dmytro, who still trains him together with Anna Kashtanova, was a judoka himself. He took him to a dojo in Kiev when he was six years old. And his son Nazar quickly took a liking to the gentle way of Judo, to fighting man against man. “I believe my absolute strength lies in newaza and in my tenacity. I’ve overcome many defeats and always came back.”
Nazar Viskov did not owe his first title win to ground fighting – the decision in the final against Luis Barroso Lopez came down to a waza-ari score with sumi gaeshi. “From now on, I want to prove myself on the World Tour and also be at the top of Grand Slams. I think there’s a good chance that I can do that as early as 2024.”
The Ukrainian passed his first judo maturity test on the mat with flying colours. And he also proved his maturity off the mat: “I really want to say thank you to my father and my coach Anna. They have always supported me through all my setbacks and defeats. It’s great that I now have my first gold medal.”
It is quite safe to assume that this will not be his last title win.
Author: EJU Media