From Japan to Kazakhstan, day one at the Judo Grand Prix in Odivelas kicked off the 2024 season in spectacular fashion.
The first World Judo Tour event of the year, the Portugal Judo Grand Prix 2024, took off yesterday in the city of Odivelas.
At -48kg it was Japan vs Japan with two Junior World Champions competing against each other. Yoshioka took the win with a waza-ari in Golden Score, taking home her first Grand Prix medal.
Mr Almaz Alsenov, CEO of Harvest Group, Partner of the International Judo Federation was on hand to award the medals.
In the men’s -60kg category, Uzbek Dilshodbek Baratov claimed the gold medal after a skillful waza-ari.
He was awarded his medal by Mr Mohammed Meridja, Education & Coaching Director of the IJF.
“I won my first event in 2024 and this is a great beginning for this year’s way to the Olympic Games,” said Baratov.
In the women’s -52kg final, Diyora Keldiyorova of Uzbekistan achieved a stunning victory and won the gold medal in the first 30 seconds – an amazing transition into a juji-gatame forced her opponent to submit and saw her win her first ever Grand Prix, adding to her impressive collection of medals.
She was awarded her medal by Mr Armen Bagdasarov, Head Referee Director of the IJF.
“I’d like to stay in Portugal very much because I came from cold minus temperatures and now it’s over 20 degrees and I feel very good,” said Kldeiyorova.
In the men’s -66kg final, former World Champion Yago Abuladze won the gold medal.
After a tense match, Abuladze managed to execute a spectacular change of direction, scoring a waza-ari in Golden Score and securing his victory.
The medals were awarded by Mr Nicolas Messner, Media and Judo for Peace Director of the IJF.
In the women’s -57kg category, Huh Mimi displayed her excellent judo skills and scored a waza-ari which she followed up with a hold down – waza-ari-awasete-ippon. Another medal for her collection and a great start to 2024.
She was awarded the gold medal by Mr Giuseppe Maddaloni, Refereeing Supervisor of the IJF and Olympic Champion.
Some incredible techniques were on display from the local Portuguese judoka – an inspiring sight for all fans in the arena.
That’s a wrap on day 1 in Portugal. Join us again tomorrow in Odivelas – a city that showcases the beauty, history and diversity of this incredible country.