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Unique European dominance in the IJF World Ranking
Unique European dominance in the IJF World Ranking
20 Aug 2021 15:50
JudoInside.com / judo news, results and photos

With 8830 points in the latest IJF World Ranking Clarisse Agbegnenou is the absolute queen of judo. More important her two Olympic titles, the only one on the world. Clarisse Agbegnenou (FRA) claimed her second gold medal of Tokyo 2020, having earlier won the women's -63kg event. She became the second athlete to win multiple gold medals in judo at a single Olympic Games, after Wim Ruska (NED) won the men's +100kg event and the men's open event at Munich 1972. A unique French woman but also a unique European domination in the ranking that won't last long.

Another super dominator now is Olympic Champion Distria Krasniqi of Kosovo who leads clearly over Munkhbat, Tonaki and Bilodid U48kg. What is remarkable is the number of European athletes still leading the World Ranking. Four French women lead the IJF Ranking. Buchard U52kg, Agbegnenou U63kg, Malonga U78kg and Dicko +78kg. With Croatia’s Barbara Matic U70kg and Krasniqi of Kosovo, only Jessica Klimkait is the only representative of Pan America. Not even an Asian athlete leads one of the seven rankings, but that will change in the next months once the Tour starts up its engines and the qualification starts next year for Paris 2024…. Can you imagine time flies.

Also in the men’s division another six Europeans lead the world ranking. Naohisa Takato who led the rank after the Olympics was now downgraded last week and is now the number three behind Yang (TPE) and Abuladze (RUS) who leads U60kg.

World Champion Lasha Shavdatuashvili (GEO) leads U73kg where legend Shohei Ono is ranked 8th simply because he doesn’t compete often compared to other fighters. Another World Champion, Matthias Casse from Belgian still leads U81kg and built out his lead on Grigalashvili, Nagase is now 7th. Although he finished seventh, Nikoloz Sherazadishvili still has enough points to lead clearly U90kg but soon he will try to collect points U100kg and he will slowly lose his points U90kg. Jorge Fonseca is the current number one in Sherazadishvili’s new category. Tamerlan Bashaev is one of the few non-World Champions who lead the world ranking. The Russian still has 900 points more than Lukas Krpalek and also World Champion Kageura doesn’t even come close at 5.

The only Asian athlete leading the ranking is An Ba-Ul, not the one you’d immediately expect to lead the tally, but he is super steady. He latterly passed Manuel Lombardo at the Olympics and Abe is third. The recent Worlds and Olympics shook up the rankings and soon the Olympic medallist will even get higher as other points will decrease.

An Olympic gold medal counts for 2200 points and the World title is worth 2000 points, which seems a bit too close. In this case the nine Asian (Japanese) Olympic Champions don’t lead the World Ranking, which is also a choice of themselves not going to Budapest for the Worlds. Japan sent its backup team. Now 12 European athletes dominate the rankings, a situation that you didn’t expect to have given the result of the Olympic Games. It is a situation that didn’t happen in this Olympic qualification since 2016. The highest number of European World Ranking leaders was 11, end of 2020 with at least two Asian leaders. This European domination in the World Ranking is the highest in 5 years. 

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