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Portuguese judo celebrates best year ever

16 Nov 2019 18:30 / judo news, results and photos

Sporting Clube de Portugal were crowned double European Judo Champion after beating Yawara-Newa in the men's Champions League final 3-2. In Odivelas best clubs of Europe were gathered for the annual Champions League for clubs, which featured the 8 Best Men's and Women's Teams in Europe.

After winning the individual world title in Tokyo Jorge Fonseca, with his red back patch, was again on the podium with his club Sporting CP. Sporting retained the title and again stated the current form of Portuguese judo. The second club for Portugal was in the women’s division where SL Benfica competed with captain Telma Monteiro.

After beating Golden Gori in the quarterfinals, Sporting met Ratiborets Ekaterinburg's Russians in the semi-finals. The team of David Reis, Joao Fernando, Frank de Wit (-81 kg), Nikoloz Sherazadishvili (-90 kg) and Jorge Fonseca (+90 kg) took a 4-1 victory and qualified for the final.

In a repetition of last year's European final, Sporting CP met Russia's Yawara-Neva again. Kherlen Ganbold advanced for Sporting, winning the victory against Zelimkhan Odzoev. The Russians got the tie through Denis Iartcev, against João Fernando. In the next match, João Martinho, in a demonstration of quality defeated Denis Kalinin, realizing the 2-1. In the next match, former World Champion Nikoloz Sherazadishvili had a wazari against him against Khusen Khalmurzaev. The Spaniard managed to reverse the score to reach his third win and seal the title. Jorge Fonseca ended his participation in the race, but failed to take down the Russian Anton Krivobokov, a true heavyweight who almost destroyed the U100kg Portuguese World Champion. Sporting CP retained the European title.

Pedro Soares: “This is the second time I live this moment, which is one of the happiest of my career, and it is very special to live it at home. None of this would be possible without the effort and overcoming that you see here in João Martinho. I made sure to bring you here today, a very strong 81kg athlete who has been injured for a long time. He embraced the Sporting project and today was undoubtedly his day. This is a pretty balanced race, so we all have to have an ace of hearts. Today, João was our trump card, the person who made the difference, it was also the day of his career relaunch.”

World finalist Barbara Timo was in the team of Benfica. After an enlightening victory against Galatasaray, SL Benfica's team had to face strong Spanish team Valencia CJ. The team consisted of Odette Giuffrida (-52 kg), Telma Monteiro (-57 kg), Juul Franssen (-63 kg), Barbara Timo (-70 kg) and Rochele Nunes (+70 kg) lost in that semi-final. For Bronze Benfica faced Romania's U-CSM Cluj-Napoca with veteran Andrea Chitu who put the Romanians ahead by beating Odette Giuffrida and Cluj took the third place on this European Podium.

The final though was captured by the super team of RSC Champigny of France who defeated the Spanish women of Valencia by 3-2. RSC Champigny defeated last year’s champions Flam 91 with World Champion Marie-Eve Gahie in the semi-final. In the final Amandine Buchard, Nekoda Smythe-Davis and Clarisse Agbegnenou already took a decisive 3-0 lead against their Spanish opponents. Sanne van Dijke (NED) and Maryna Slutskaya (BLR) took a victory for Valencia to finish the statistics. Red Star Champigny won the ‘Champions League’ also in 2012 and 2015.

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Related Judo Photos

  • Jorge Fonseca (POR) - World Championships Tokyo (2019, JPN) - © IJF Gabriela Sabau, International Judo Federation
  • Clarisse Agbegnenou (FRA) - European Games Minsk (2019, BLR) - © David Finch,
  • Nekoda Smythe-Davis (GBR) - World Championships Baku (2018, AZE) - © Oliver Sellner

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