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Kim and Ortiz face in the first round, Asahina favourite

25 Sep 2018 22:10


World number one Kim Min-Jeong of Korea is obviously the first seeded athlete but apparently it doesn’t guarantee a smooth draw. In her first round she will face 2012 Olympic Champion Idalys Ortiz. The Cuban six time World medallist and double World Champion is unseeded so one of the two will be out in the first round.

We estimate the winner will reach the semi final, despite the presence of the tall Ukrainian talent Yelyzaveta Kalanina who might still reach the quarter final.

Maria Suelen Altheman of Brazil tops pool B but with former World number one Maryna Slutskaya (BLR) who will meet with World Open bronze medallist Cheikh Rouhou (TUN), the Brazilian is considered the strongest. Carolin Weiss and Anne M’ Bairo stress the test a bit, but we anticipate Altheman will be the opponent of either Kim or more likely Ortiz in the semi final.

In Pool C Larisa Ceric is always among the favourites. Since she won silver at the World Open Championships she should be considered as one of the challengers for the world title. Interesting is her opponent. They speak the same language and have trained together. “ Lightweight” Ana Velensek has developed well +78kg can win her third world championships medal, this time +78 and with Ceric as first opponent that will be a hell of a job. Iryna Kinderska, now fighting for Azerbaijan is another experienced judoka but Sandra Jablonskyte (LTU) is in a better shape.

The biggest favourite for the world title is World Open winner Sarah Asahina leading pool D. The Japanese faces Ivana Sutalo in round one. We don’t see anyone stopping Asahina until the semi final. On the other side of the pool Kayra Sayit (TUR) can reach the quarter final, but all four women are dangerous outsiders for this position: Beatriz Souza (BRA), Mercedesz Szigetvari (HUN) is in shape  and Su Xin the dark horse from China. She won bronze at the Grand Slam in Tokyo in 2016, where she defeated Jablonskyte.

We estimate Asahina as the number one on Sunday. It’s actually dreadful that Ortiz and Kim meet in the first round, but it’s the reality of strong championships. We think one of the two will make it to the final.

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Related judoka and events

Related Judo Photos

  • Sarah Asahina (JPN) - Grand Prix Zagreb (2018, CRO) - © Klaus Müller, Watch:
  • Idalys Ortiz (CUB) - World Championships Baku (2018, AZE) - © JudoHeroes
  • Min-Jeong Kim (KOR) - World Championships Baku (2018, AZE) - © JudoHeroes

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