29 April 2024


European Judo Championships Seniors Zagreb 2024


Italy were off to a strong start in the European Mixed Team Championship bronze medal contest against Germany, with a win from Thauany David CAPANNI DIAS against Jana ZIEGLER in the -57kg category. In the very final seconds, Capanni Dias brought Ziegler to her knees with kuzushi alone but no score, but instead of giving up, the Italian athlete continued the motion and used her leg to score with uchi mata.

Unfortunately for Team Italy, this was their first and last celebration.

Thauany David CAPANNI DIAS (ITA) © Gabi Juan

The first point for Germany came from Jan RUEBO, who killed a sumi gaeshi attempt by Manuel PARLATI (ITA) in the -73kg category, and proceeded to hold him for 20 seconds. It was a harder endeavour for the -70kg Samira BOCK (GER) who tackled a very persistent Martina ESPOSITO, however she anticipated a seoi nage from the Italian athlete, and countered for waza ari. The remainder of the contest was tough for Bock, clearly having injured her leg, but she survived the four minutes and held on to the score. In true judo fashion, taking responsibility for your opponent as well as yourself, Esposito immediately rushed to Bock to help her off the tatami, despite losing the contest.

It was looking close in the -90kg category between Lorenzo RIGANO (ITA) and Johann LENZ (GER), Rigano attacked with o uchi gari, hopping Lenz across the tatami, but the German athlete managed to take control, and used the momentum of his opponent to sweep him in the air with strong ashi waza for the win. Germany only needed one more for the win, and that came from Anna Monta OLEK. Stating that Giorgia STANGHERLIN (ITA) is one of her more difficult opponents, she struggled against her but knew that if she could get close, she could find a way to win the contest. Eventually, the moment presented itself, and she threw with obi tori gaeshi to clinch the win for her team.

Anna Monta OLEK (GER) © Carlos Ferreira

It is amazing, the team is amazing the feeling here is also great. I am very relieved to do it in golden score it was a close fight with a good ending. I think it is different to handle the pressure during team event it is different, you fight for your whole team and try to focus.

Coach Claudiu PUSA was very proud of the team,

The team for Germany is very young. Only our +90kg judoka has experience, he was part of the Olympic team in Tokyo. I am very happy winning a medal with this young team but more so because they did good judo. I am satisfied with the bronze because the new generations needs as experience much as possible.

Team Germany! © Gabi Juan


Author: Thea Cowen