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Sanne Van Dijke victorious over former world number one for the Netherlands
26 May 2018 14:35
Dutch woman Sanne Van Dijke defeated Kelita Zupancic of Canada to win the U70kg gold medal which was her first on the Grand Prix Hohhot stage. Van Dijke conquered Canada’s former world number one to capture her country’s first medal at the Hohhot Grand Prix 2018 in a category which always delivers for the Netherlands.
A waza-ari from Dutchwoman Van Dijke was the only score of the contest in a highly-competitive final against Pan American Championships bronze medallist Zupancic.
In the first semi-final European bronze medallist Gemma Howell (GBR) lost her concentration in golden score as Düsseldorf Grand Slam bronze medallist Van DIjke Dijke held down the in-form Brit for her second waza-ari score. In the second semi-final world number one Maria Portela (BRA) was surprisingly beaten by Zupancic who overpowered her long-time Pan American rival on the ground with a hold down for 20 seconds.
The first bronze medal was awarded to world champion Arai Chizuru (JPN) who bested Portela with a buzzer-beating uchi-mata for ippon. Neither judoka would have expected to be contesting a bronze medal contest but that’s judo and the world number one overcame the world number two to reach the medal podium in Hohhot.
The second bronze medal was won by Howell who threw Antalya Grand Prix winner Anna Bernholm (SWE) with a makikomi after one minute and 24 seconds of added time. London 2012 Olympian Howell defeated her former -63kg rival to continue her dramatic rise up the U70kg rankings in 2018.
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