Morgane Ribout became the new World Champion in the -57kg division at the 2009 World Judo Championships on Thursday.
Ribout: “I saw the draw yesterday. My club director told me, ‘Well, Morgane, you have a final in each round’. I had to fight like crazy until the final if I want to get there. But it didn’t frighten me, in fact it motivated me. I was very determined.”
“I thought that I could win today, that I had the potential for it. But everything depends on the form of the day, on the psychology, on the attitude. I didn’t know that I would win but I wanted it.”
“During the competition I really tried to be aggressive from the very beginning. The most dangerous moment was the final, as I already had lost to the Monteiro at the European Championships.”
“I was the young hopeful (of the French team). So today I feel very emotional. I think I need some time to realise it.”
“Coming here, I always wanted a medal, the gold medal. But I’m not the top ranked athlete in my category, so it’s probably less expected than a victory from Monteiro. Maybe my win was unexpected for the others. It is not such a big surprise for me. If you don’t believe in yourself, you won’t win.”
“I’m super happy right now. Kisses to everybody!”
Her opponent Telma Monteiro (POR) was still satisfied despite her second World Championships silver medal.
Monteiro: “I’m very pleased with this medal. It was a very good day for me. It is my first year in the -57kg category, so to finish second at the world championships is a very good result. I was in the final and once you are in the final you want to win, but it is still good.” She was just better today.”
Kifayat Gasimova (AZE) was a bit sad losing the semi final to Monteiro: “It is a good feeling, but I wanted to be in the final. I think I would have had a good chance to beat the Ribout as I’ve beaten her several times before.”
“In the semi final against Monteiro I threw her and I thought I would get Ippon, but I didn’t and then the time was over and I had lost.”
Youngster Hedvig Karakas (HUN) could only be satisfied: “I’m very happy, this is my first world championships. I’m the happiest person right now and I want to thank my coach Gabor Kovacs. I had six fights today, so it was tiring.”