10 September 2021

JUNIORS CONTINUE TO IMPRESS ON DAY TWO OF CHAMPIONSHIPS IN LUXEMBOURG

JUNIORS CONTINUE TO IMPRESS ON DAY TWO OF CHAMPIONSHIPS IN LUXEMBOURG

France and Russia continued their battle for the top position and today the win goes to the latter as the -81kg category secured two medals; a gold from Ibragimgadzhi SULEIMANOV and bronze from Daniil DRANOVSKII. 

The 2021 junior European champion was very happy and proud of his win today, especially given his dramatic semi-final against Giorgi SHERAZADISHVILI (GEO). 

Last year I fought against him in Berlin and lost, but again this year we fought in Italy and on this occasion I won. It was difficult today because twice I thought I had won but the score was taken away, I did manage to focus again but it was hard to do. 

His final was more straight forward against the French, Arnaud AREGBA, scoring twice within the first half of the contest to take the gold. Suleimanov explained he wasn’t so prepared for this final as his focus had been on the semi-final with Sherazadishvili but in the end he was glad to become the junior European champion. 

It was certainly an emotional win for Katarina KRISTO (CRO) in the -63kg category, she had a fantastic day, winning all her fights but one by ippon after a long stretch of hard work and a mental battle with herself. 

I feel very proud, excited, every emotion! I worked so hard for this and now I am European champion. All of my hard work has paid off in the end, as a cadet I struggled a bit in my head during competition but now I can finally say I beat myself and that was my biggest opponent. 

Apart from this, it was the perfect day for Kristo and certainly her time to be on top of the podium at a major championship. 

Croatia took a second medal in the -70kg category with Lara CVJETKO battling her way to the final, unfortunately it wasn’t another gold but it was still a brilliant performance. Instead it was a very dominant contest led by Nataliia CHYSTIAKOVA that secured her the gold medal and title for Ukraine. 

The Ukrainian looked very strong and confident throughout the day and was feeling well prepared going in to the final, having faced Cvjetko earlier in the year in Prague. 

I was really well prepared for this event, not because of the European Cup results because I wasn’t at my best then, but because I was in my best shape. I had some injuries and couldn’t commit to rehabilitation because of competitions but after Bucharest I took a break and recovered. In Prague, it was the first contest with Cvjetko, and I managed it well, today it felt the same. I can’t explain my feelings, it is my first medal in a junior European championships but of course I am happy with my result. 

Experience was definitely on the side of Adrian SULCA (ROU) in the -73kg category. His success in senior European Open events, two gold medals in 2021 is evidence he is capable of a great transition, but he needed this title first. 

He wasn’t at his best despite a good performance but explained he had so many emotions the night before that he simply couldn’t rest and sleep so he wasn’t in the best shape but still secured wins over his opponents to take gold.

The final was difficult as his opponent, Jus MECILOSEK (SLO) was very strong and gave him a lot of difficulties to overcome. Sulca wasn’t able to land any attacks but was confident that he would win out in the end. It was an uncontrolled attack from the Slovenian that Sulca was able to counter with te waza, putting a waza ari on the board and hold off his opponent until the clock ran down. 

The second day of the Junior European Championships in Luxembourg was graced with some very special guests including His Royal Highness Prince Louis, Prince of Luxembourg, Prince of Nassau and Bourbon-Parme; His Excellency the Ambassador of Japan, M. Jiro Okuyama and M. Marc Mathekowitsch, President of the Board of Directors of the National Centre for Sports and Culture ‘D’Coque’, all of whom presented medals and were present for the opening ceremony. 

President of the National Judo Federation of Luxembourg, Mr Serge Schaul, His Royal Highness Prince Louis, Prince of Luxembourg, Prince of Nassau and Bourbon-Parme and President of the EJU, Mr Sergey Soloveychik.

President of the National Judo Federation of Luxembourg, Mr Serge Schaul, His Excellency the Ambassador of Japan, M. Jiro Okuyama and President of the EJU, Mr Sergey Soloveychik.

There will be more exciting action for the third and final day of individual competition where we will see the -90kg, -78kg, -100kg, +78kg and +100kg athletes compete for their chance to become junior title holders. All contests will be streamed live at live.ijf.org. 

-63kg Medallists 🥇 KRISTO Katarina 🇭🇷 🥈 VARGA Brigitta 🇭🇺 🥉 VAN LIESHOUT Joanne 🇳🇱 🥉 LISCIANI Sara 🇮🇹

-73kg Medallists 🥇 SULCA Adrian 🇷🇴 🥈 MECILOSEK Jus 🇸🇮 🥉 PENA INSAUSTI Javier 🇪🇸 🥉 PELLIGRA Vincenzo 🇮🇹

-70kg Medallists 🥇 CHYSTIAKOVA Nataliia 🇺🇦 🥈 CVJETKO Lara 🇭🇷 🥉 TSUNODA ROUSTANT Ai 🇪🇸 🥉 CRISOSTOMO Joana 🇵🇹

-81kg Medallists 🥇 SULEIMANOV Ibragimgadzhi 🇷🇺 🥈 AREGBA Arnaud 🇫🇷 🥉 DRANOVSKII Daniel 🇷🇺 🥉 KOPECKY Adam 🇨🇿


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European Junior Mixed Team Championships 2021

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Author: Thea Cowen