10 time World Champion suffers defeat
Day 2 of the Paris Grand Slam saw the return of the king. Two time Olympic and 10 time World Champion Teddy Riner was here, and the stadium was packed with fans ready to cheer him on.
But they were in for a shock. Kokoro Kageura made history, defeating the French giant for the first time in 10 years, stunning the entire French nation.
But Judo is a fickle sport, and when Dutchman Henk Grol stepped out to face Kageura in the final, Riner’s conqueror was brought back down to earth by a fantastic piece of skill from the man from the Netherlands. It was a cruel twist of fate for Kageura who had done the unthinkable, to then come unstuck in the final. But for Grol it was a huge victory. One that means he is firmly in the hunt for Olympic qualification.
“Paris is one of the biggest competitions in the world. The crowd is amazing. I couldn’t believe yesterday that I could win. I thought I could take a medal, but to win is very difficult," Grol said. "Everything has to come together. The same when I won Osaka last year, one year ago, was also so special. Yeah, 34 years old and still here.”
Ono wins through in a tense contest
In the -70kg category, Japan’s Yoko Ono produced a moment of brilliance after a tense contest. Executing a textbook Ippon seoi-nage to score ippon on her compatriot Saki Niizoe and capture her fifth Grand Slam title.
She was awarded her medal by IJF Ambassador, Nadia Comaneci
At -90kgs, world number one Nikoloz SHERAZADISHVILI took on Japan’s Nagasawa a final that ended with one of the biggest throws of the tournament, as SHERAZADISHVILI launched NAGASAWA with this gigantic hip throw. He was thrilled to add to a Paris Grand Slam title to his impressive list of accomplishments.
He was awarded his medal by Mr.Rene Fasel, President of the Ice Hockey International Federation and IOC Member.
In the heavyweight category, the French crowd had yet more to cheer for, as yet another member of the women’s team rose to the occasion. Former European champion Romane Dicko secured her second consecutive IJF World Judo Tour gold, as she dominated current European champion, Maryna Slutskaya of Belarus to provide the hosts with another women gold. Co-founder and vice president of the International Teqball Federation, Mr. Gyorgy Gattyan, awarded Dicko her medal.
“There are a lot of French people who are here to see the French team," Dicko said. "To win a grand slam in Paris is very beautiful”
Our move of the day came from the eventual silver medallist at -81kg, Sharafuddin Boltaboev. Fooling current World Champion Sagi Muki with a beautiful change of direction, the Uzbek impressed the knowledgeable French crowd and what a fantastic way to round up the prestigious Paris Grand Slam.