24 February 2024


Warsaw European Open 2024


Of the seven categories on day one of the Warsaw European Open 2024, only one of the top seeds managed to make it in to their respective final; Maysa PARDAYEVA (TKM) made her way through the -57kg category to battle out it against Marta GARCIA MARTIN (ESP) for the gold medal. Standing in her way in the semi final was the Gyor European Open winner, Paris Saint Germain team member, Martha FAWAZ (FRA), who was defeated with a swift morote seoi nage.

Turkmenistan entered a strong team this weekend and we will also see Serdar RAHIMOV take on Mykyta HOLOBORODKO (UKR) in the -66kg final. This will be an exciting bout, both athletes defeating strong British opponents; Samuel HALL and Charlie YOUNG respectively for their final positions.

In the -48kg category, Anais PERROT (FRA) will try for a third time to take a continental open gold medal, settling for the silver in Gyor a couple of weeks ago but raring to go here in Warsaw, defeating KOSZEGI Rebeka Rita (HUN) in the semi final with a combination of seoi nage attempts. Perrot’s final obstacle is Junior European bronze medallist, Giulia GHIGLIONE (ITA) who demonstrated her ashi waza skills in her semi final, as well as seamless transitions in to ne waza.

Enzo JEAN (FRA) was the one to stop Kazakhstan’s number one seed in the -60kg category, Sherzod DAVLATOV in the quarter final, but now has a national rivalry on his hands, as on the other half of the draw, Maxime MERLIN demonstrated equally nice judo in a bid to take gold today. Merlin had a tough test against Georgian judoka, Toma GELASHVILI, but the Frenchman anticipated an uchi mata attempt, and was already in for a drop seoi nage to finish the contest.

There will be yet another national head to head in the -52kg category, but this time Italy have come out on top. Martina CASTAGNOLA and Kenya PERNA will decide the gold medal, both with different styles, it was a very low o uchi gari from Castagnola, yet a sumi gaeshi from Perna in their semi finals. The latter will be desperate to succeed, already having taken a silver medal in a continental open last year in Sofia, striving to the next step.

Kenya PERNA (ITA) © Carlos Ferreira

It was looking good for the -63kg Gyor European Open gold medallist, Ariela SANCHEZ BENITEZ (ESP) as she headed in to golden score of the semi final against Nadiah KRACHTEN (NED), and almost countered a drop seoi nage attempt from the Dutch athlete. However Krachten realised this was her moment and continued a strong drive to score the waza ari. The challenger in the final will be Viktoria FOLGER (GER) who used her ne waza to finish her semi final against Varvara KUCHAR (LTU) in less than a minute.

As for the -73kg category, Samuel GASSNER (AUT) was unstoppable, sealing his final fate with a huge obi tori gaeshi against Antonin BLANDIN (FRA). On the other side of the draw it was a much more dramatic semi final, Saba KHALISHVII (GEO) scored early on and ceded two shidos, running out of steam as the end neared, but his opponent Manuel PARLATI (ITA) had plenty left to give. With mere seconds left, a last ditch attempt with a swift tai otoshi brought Parlati the win.

Samuel GASSNER (AUT) © Carlos Ferreira


Author: Thea Cowen