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Otgontsetseg Galbadrakh wins her second Grand Slam for Kazakhstan
28 Oct 2016 18:05
Rio 2016 Olympic bronze medallist Otgontsetseg Galbadrakh (KAZ) won her second Grand Slam gold medal with a fine display in the women’s lightest weight category. The 24-year-old judoka defeated Zagreb Grand Prix winner Milica Nikolic (SRB), who was a surprise finalist, to win U48kg gold and continue her rich vein of form.
Galbadrakh and Nikolic were locked in a stalemate at the halfway point until both came together and the Kazakh took control of her opponent to lift her up with her favoured ura-nage for ippon.
In the first semi-final former world champion Munkhbat Urantsetseg (MGL) was shocked by Nikolic. The Serbian fighter guaranteed her place on the podium by narrowly beating the Mongolian with a yuko score to continue a successful post-Olympic run on the IJF World Judo Tour.
In the second semi-final pocket-sized powerhouse Galbadrakh (KAZ) bested World Judo Masters bronze medallist Julia Figueroa (ESP) in golden score. After 44 seconds the Kazakh fighter, who was the first Rio 2016 medallist to return to IJF duty, outmanoeuvred her Spanish foe and threw with a determined technique for a yuko and a place in the final.
The first bronze medal contest was won by Almaty Grand Prix bronze medallist Nathalia Brigida (BRA) who returned to winning ways against Figueroa. Brigida was off the pace in her previous contests but regained her composure in the break to come back and win the first contest of the final block by a yuko score. The second bronze medal was won by Munkhbat who was too experienced for 19-year-old Sephora Corcher (FRA). Mongolia’s U48kg star opened the scoring with a yuko before confidently dispatching her French opponent and Glasgow European Open silver medallist with a trademark uchi-mata.
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