New spirit for African judoka at Olympic Games

The Olympic Games have passed and the new era has started for the 2020 Olympic Games. In 2017 the World Championships in Budapest are scheduled.

Looking back at the Olympic Games the African participants have gained new experiences and some of the athletes had some good results such as seventh places for Christianne Legentil (MRI), again like in 2012, Nihel Cheikh Rouhou (TUN) and Ramadan Darwish (EGY). For some it was their last tournament, for some players the Olympic Games a new starting point. Young athletes such as Ahmed Abelrahman (EGY), Antoinette Gasongo (BDI), Gavin Mogopa (BOT) and Andrew Thomas Mlugu (TAN) who are just 20 years it was a fantastic experience.

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The tiny Christianne Legentil, the smallest of all African judoka (1.53m) proved once more to belong to the world top. This time she surprised Israelian Gili Cohen U52kg, one of the seeded players and fought once more to Majlinda Kelmendi, the later Olympic Champion and in the repechage against Natalia Kuziutina, the later bronze medallist. Taciana Lima (GBS) who won various World Tour medals had to be satisfied with a ninth place in a field of 23 athletes, she lost to the bronze medallist Otgontsetseg Galbadrakh.

Mathews Punza (ZAM) delivered great judo against Golan Pollack (ISR) and proceeded into the next round U66kg. Also worth while mentioning was the ninth place for Antonia Moreira (ANG). She had one of the upsets U70kg defeating super talent Elvismar Rodriguez in the first round U70kg. Rodriguez was a medal candidate. Moreira then lost to bronze medallist Vargas Koch (GER).

Lyes Bouyacoub (ALG) defeated Ivan Remarenco (UAE), also an outsider for a medal. In the same pool U100kg Ramadan Darwish defeated 2014 vice World Champion Jose Armenteros of Cuba. Then Darwish lost, just like Bouyacoub, to the later silver medallist Gasimov (AZE) and vice World Champion Frey (GER) to indicate the severe competition.

20160811_RioSite_Lyes Bouyacoub vs Ivan Remarenco

The Olympic Games also generated a lot of media attention for the former Congolese judoka in the refugee team (ROT) and world travelers such as Szandra Szogedi (GHA).

With new spirit African athletes can be an example for the new generation and book results at the tournaments in African and beyond.

Find more pictures below our Olympic gallery 

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