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Ai Shishime wins third Grand Slam title
9 Feb 2019 18:45
Former world champion Shishime Ai of Japan defeated World Judo Masters gold medallist Tsunoda Natsumi to win her third Grand Slam title. In Paris Shishime recorded a crucial win over her teammate to push herself in front of Tsunoda in the domestic pecking order as both aim to topple world champion Abe Uta (JPN) in the race for Tokyo 2020.
A third shido for Tsunoda for passivity gave the victory to Shishime who still has a fair chance of selection for the Tokyo 2019 World Championships.
In the first semi-final Tsunoda beat Junior European Championships bronze medallist Nina Estefania Esteo Linne (ESP) by ippon. In the second semi-final Osaka Grand Slam silver medallist Munkhbat Urantsetseg (MGL) was caught with an o-uchi-gari for ippon by Shishime.
The first bronze medal contest opposed The Hague Grand Prix bronze medallist Astride Gneto (FRA) and U48kg mainstay Munkhbat and the home judoka was awarded the win after her Mongolian foe was reprimanded on three separate occasions to receive hansoku-make. In the second bronze medal contest Olympic silver medallist Odette Giuffrida (ITA) bested Esteo Linne with a calculated ashi-waza attack which earned a second and match-winning waza-ari for the Italian.
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Vasily Smolin (RUS)
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