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Asia wins all 5 titles at Hohhot Grand Prix final day

Super exciting judo on hand
Super exciting judo on hand Copyright international judo federation
Copyright international judo federation
By Euronews
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Asia won five out of the five titles on offer at the Hohhot Grand Prix on the third and final day. The Grand Prix, which serves as a qualification tournament for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, saw some impressive judo from veterans and newcomers alike.


The final day was also a celebration of the city's Mongolian heritage as our man of the day was Mongolia's first ever Olympic champion - Tuvshinbayar Naidan.

In his first match, he took out world number one David Moura of Brazil, before beating Iranian Javad Mahjoub in his next match.

After some more impressive throwing judo in his semi-final contest against Uzbekistan's Bekmurod Oltiboev, Naidan would have a chance at his first World Judo Tour gold medal since 2015, as he faced his teammate Duurenbayar Ulziibayar in an all Mongolian affair - which the veteran dominated.

After earning a waza ari lead he then threw with a sensational shoulder throw for an ippon win.

"Being in Inner Mongolia feels like being at home in Mongolia, I am so happy!" said Tuvshinbayar Naidan., adding, "we brought a big team here and I want to say thank you to all the Mongolians and inner Mongolians for the help we received."

Our woman of the day is Japan's Ruika Sato. In the final, she faced a stern test in the form of reigning World Champion Mayra Aguiar of Brazil.

A clever counter attack from Sato scored her a waza ari, but more importantly it landed her on top in a pin, from which she was able to hold on for the win.

"Whenever there was a throw today, no matter who the judoka, the crowd got so excited, so it was great to see that the audience really understood judo and really enjoyed it," said Ruika Sato. "I'm going to try to improve my judo so it's more entertaining for the fans," she enthused.

There was a gold for Korea in the -100 kg category as Guham Cho defeated Russia's Kazbek Zankishiev by a golden score waza ari in the final.

More gold came for Japan at + 78 kg as Junior World Champion Akira Sone threw Korea's Minjeong Kim for a waza ari before securing a pin for an ippon win. Japan's judokas, in fact, in the final day swept the gold medals, at seven, and the most medals overall.

The -90 kg gold went to Korea's Dong Han Gwak

Noticeably absent from the podium were Olympic Champion Mashu Baker of Japan and World Champion Nemanja Majdov of Serbia, who met earlier in the day in a captivating contest.

It was decided in Golden score as Baker caught Majdov with a skillful footsweep for ippon.

The Olympic Champion proved a point against the World Champion and it was our move of the day.

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