The battle battle of the day so far was the semi final U81kg between Dutch World Junior Champion Frank de Wit and Takanori Nagase, the Japanese Senior World Champion. It was De Wit who led by wazari after a takeover, but with more than three minutes to go it was hard to keep Nagase of his back, but De Wit sustained....
Five seconds for the End De Wit was too easy in the approach of Nagase’s last attack and de Japanese scored a wazari. With both a penalty golden score decided and it was Nagase who attacked three times without success, but enough for a penalty for De Wit. Nagase will fight Ivaylo Ivanov (BUL) in the final both never fought. One of Japanese’s aces for Olympic gold was vulnerable today, but may still take the gold.
U73kg Rustam Orujov was surprised by Dmytro Kanivets of the Ukraine in the quarter final. But Kanivets lost his semi final against Giyoshon Boboyev (UZB) by penalties. He will meet teammate Mirali Sharipov. Sharipov defeated Miki Ungvari in the semi final. An all Uzbek final for the first time in a Grand Slam. Sharipov defeated Boboyev once in an official international event, in 2015 in Qingdao for bronze.
Alice Schlesinger defeated Yarden Gerbi again. In the semi final U63kg the British repeated her victories of Tyumen last year and Duesseldorf this year. In six bouts Gerbi won one in 2013. So Schlesinger in the final against Marijana Miskovic Hasanbegovic who gave a herself a huge present with a victory over JiYun Bak of Korea in the semi. The Croatian had to gain all possible points to take it to Rio 2016, still far ahead of the qualified athletes. Gold will change it all. But Schlesinger defeated her three times, although the last one in 2011. Ones she won, in 2009. It’s an amazing performance of the Croatian judo mother.
Both Maria’s: Portela and Bernabeu are in the final of Baku. Bernabeu was not such a surprise in a doable pool, but Portela is back where she belongs and the tiny Brazilian may be an outsider for an Olympic stunt. She’s the one who can pump up the gas for one day. Today she needed to convince herself as she’s qualified anyway. The final was enough. Portela defeated Bernabeu once in 2014 but lost four times. The Spaniards may win another gold medal and Bernabeu her first Grand Slam. Portela defeated Juliane Robra in the semi final while Bernabeu overcame Maria Perez in the semi.