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2024 World Judo Championships – Japan’s Tanaka and Takeoka dominate

2024 Judo World Championship

Tanaka and Takeoka dominate in men’s -66kg category at Mubadala Arena at the end of two days of competition

ABU DHABI: Powerhouse Japan asserted itself at the end of the second day of competition of the 2024 World Judo Championships – Abu Dhabi, which is being held at the Mubadala Arena.

Despite resting most of their top-level judokas, Japan suddenly came alive in the men’s competition as Ryoma Tanaka and Takeshi Takeoka battled it out for the top two spots in the men’s -66kg category, late on Monday.

Finland’s Luukas Saha and Georgia’s Vazha Margvelashvili had to settle for the two bronze medals.

Japan had further success as Tatsuki Ishihara was pushed down for a silver medal in the men’s -73kg category after losing to Hidayet Heydarov of Azerbaijan.

Ankhzaya Lavjargal of Mongolia and Nils Stump of Switzerland won the two bronze on offer.

Japan’s fourth medal on the day came in the women’s -57kg category after Momo Tamaoki slipped into third along with Canadian Jessica Klimkait.

South Korea’s Huh Mi-mi took the gold medal after defeating a second Canadian, Christa Deguchi in the final.

At the end of two days of competition, Japan is rightly placed on top of the standings with a total of five medals, including one gold and two silver and bronze medals apiece.

Italy, South Korea, Georgia, Mongolia and Azerbaijan are hot on their heels after winning a gold medal each.

With Japan deciding to rest most of their Olympic selectees at this event, the judo world could possibly see some other nations take the top spot in the medals standings when competition concludes in Abu Dhabi, on Friday.

The World Judo Championships – Abu Dhabi 2024 is the flagship event of the IJF World Judo Tour, while also being the last competition for participants to garner valuable points in an attempt to qualify for this summer’s 2024 Paris Olympics.

It may be recalled that the World Judo Championships – Abu Dhabi 2024 was inaugurated at the hands of His Excellency Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, at the Mubadala Arena, late on Monday.

Organised by the International Judo Federation in close coordination with the UAE Judo Federation, the weeklong competition has 658 judokas from 107 nations competing till the final day on May 24.

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