The latest Judo News offered by

Kosovo have a new star in Loriana Kuka

8 Apr 2018 18:10

 IJF media Department    IJF Media Team / IJF

Kosovo have unearthed another gem on the IJF World Judo Tour as 21-year-old uchi-mata specialist Loriana Kuka wasted no time in making her presence felt at the top level with an eye-catching victory at U78kg at the Grand Prix in Antalya.

Anastasiya Turchyn of the Ukraine opposed Kuka in the final in Antalya and it was the Kosovo judoka who won their first clash with a buzzer-beating ouchi-gari. The top prize represented Kosovo’s first ever medal at this weight and made sure that the land Olympic champion Majlinda Kelmendi made famous finished the competition top of the medal table.

In the first semi-final Kuka threw world number 43 Nikiforova (RUS) for ippon with an uchi-mata with 45 seconds left on the clock to guarantee one more medal for Kosovo. Kuka led with a waza-ari from a hip throw before ending the contest in fine fashion. In the second semi-final Tbilisi Grand Prix silver medallist Turchyn defeated U23 European Championships bronze medallist Alexandra Gimaletdinova (RUS) in added time. Gimaletdinova struck first with a waza-ari from a tani-otoshi before Turchyn replied with an osoto-gari for a waza-ari score. In golden score the Ukrainian sealed a place in the final from a ouchi-gari which earned her second and match-winning waza-ari. 

The first bronze medal contest was won by world bronze medallist Natalie Powell (GBR) who defeated Gimaletdinova with a professional performance. World number three Powell earned her 16th Grand Prix medal by a waza-ari score as Gimaletdinova offered little under an onslaught from the Welsh judoka. Only two judoka have won more Grand Prix medals than Powell (Luise Malzahn of Germany and Otgontsetseg Galbadrakh of Kazakhstan) and the Irfon Judo Club product will be one of the favourites at the European Championships later this month.

The second bronze medal was won by Nikiforova who went ahead against Agadir Grand Prix bronze medallist Yarden Mayersohn (ISR) with a waza-ari score from an osoto-makikomi. Russian Nikiforova added her second and match-winning waza-ari with a sode-tsurikomi-goshi to capture her first IJF World Judo Tour hardware.

Related judoka and events

Related Judo Photos

  • Loriana Kuka (KOS) - Grand Prix Antalya (2018, TUR) - © IJF Media Team, IJF
  • Loriana Kuka (KOS), Anastasiya Turchyn (UKR), Niurguiana Nikiforova (RUS), Natalie Powell (GBR) - Grand Prix Antalya (2018, TUR) - © IJF Media Team, IJF

Related Judo Videos

Related Judo News


Former world champion Umeki beats Japanese teammate to gold

12 Aug 2018 19:05

Former world champion Umeki Mami (JPN) walked away from Budapest with gold for the first time in her career having finished second at the Worlds a year ago and fifth at the Grand Prix in 2015. Umeki, who was a surprise winner of the World Championships in 2015, took the final to her compatriot and Ekaterinburg Grand Slam winner Takayama Rika (JPN) with a string of convincing attacks. Read more


Mikhail Igolnikov strikes with first European senior title

28 Apr 2018 19:05

Mikhail Igolnikov earned Russia’s fourth gold of the European Judo Championships in Tel Aviv today, leaving them top of the final medals table, as he defeated Serbia’s world champion Nemanja Majdov in the U90 kilograms class. Read more


Ruika Sato finds a way past world champion Aguiar

25 Feb 2018 18:30

Ruika Sato of Japan won her fourth Grand Slam title with a key win over world champion Mayra Aguiar of Brazil who had to open her season with a silver medal. Sato employed her usual combative style which put her Brazilian rival under pressure from the opening seconds which appeared to unsettle the owner of the red backpatch in the U78kg category. Read more


Foreign women facing trouble winning Grand Slam Tokyo

1 Dec 2017 13:55

Only 14 foreign women have ever won the Grand Slam in Tokyo. All other titles were captured by the female home judoka. Kayla Harrison and Urska Zolnir won the Grand Slam twice. Most successful country in France having four women that won the Grand Slam: Decosse, Agbegenou, Emane and Tcheumeo. Last year only Urantsetseg Munkhbat (MGL) and Kathrin Unterwurzacher (AUT) were able to win the precious title. Read more


Natalie Powell first British world number one in IJF World Ranking

31 Oct 2017 10:15

Natalie Powell says she is targeting the European and World Championships in 2018 after becoming world number one. Wales' Powell became the first British judoka to top the world rankings after beating Marhinde Verkerk to claim U78kg gold at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam. Read more

Inside Judo Coach

Judo birthday

Result City Date
1Budapest10 Aug
1Düsseldorf23 Feb
1St. Petersburg2017
Result City Date
1Zagreb27 Jul
1Prague3 Mar


First description Second description Third description Four description