Russia demanded gold in the lightweight class U60kg. One of the oldest in the field, Robert Mshvidobadze resisted the opposition coming from his own country by Yago Abuladze. Mshvidobadze (31) didn’t have too much high level opponents as in this class the Asian athlete dominate.
Since 2007 eight European titles were won by Russian athletes. Mshvidobadze won the title for the first time in 2017. Galstyan and Mudranov though also took Olympic gold and that’s what counts. If you believe in stats, two titles in one Olympic cycle is a good sign for the veteran from Russia.
Belgian Jorre Verstraeten again highlighted his day with another bronze medal. Last year in Minsk at the European Games he surprised with bronze and this time it wasn’t different. The Belgian lightweight lost to Abuladze in the quarter final but got back strong via two victories in the repechage and confirmed hunger for the Games. An excellent start for Belgium with two medals in one day.
Francisco Garrigos took the second medal today for Spain. The Spanish have a strong team and Garrigos is always strong at European Championships. Last time in Minsk he took silver, this time he won his last contest and his third European medal in this Olympic cycle. Garrigos is steady and stable but has to confirm it at world level and that will be his aim for 2021.
World Champion Lukhumi Chkhvimiani lost his first contest to Yanislav Gerchev (BUL) who wasn’t awarded with a medal today.