Edition No. 20. Autumn, 1999. Today is
 
Judo Universiades 1999
8-11 JULY 1999 - MAJORCA

By: Karen Roberts
 
The sunny, holiday resort of Palma Nova Majorca, seemed an unlikely location for the world's second largest sporting event. Obviously the largest event being the Olympics and the not so obvious second largest being the World Student Games. The biggest shock of this event however is not the size or professionalism but who actually competes in it. Yes, judo players can be students! A lot of the teams competing are likely to be seen in the forthcoming Worlds in Birmingham.
 
When the Judo team arrived at the games, the British team as a whole had a solitary Bronze medal between them, that had come from the swimming relay team. This was to change in the next few days. Sponsored by Nike, the team were not only feeling good but looking good too (according to a certain Eric Bonti!).
 
First to compete, in the +78kg, was Simone Callender who achieved a 7th place. She fought again four days later in the open category, drawing the Cuban Beltran first fight. Although Simone lost, a player of Beltran's calibre is usually expected to bring you back into the repercharge but when the World Champion loses her second round fight it is then you realise the standard of players at this competition. Michelle Rogers fought well in the -78kg, narrowly losing on a decision to Luna of Cuba. Here was another World Champion, expected to win her next fight, but she lost, unfortunately taking away Michelle's chance of a bronze medal fight.
 
The second day of the Judo competition saw Chris Johnson getting a well deserved 5th place in the -81kg. Simon Childs was unfortunate in the -90kg, but went away with some excellent experience for future international events. This was the day that the world saw the return of Kate Howey in -70kg. Kate proved she was well and truly over her past knee injury, by throwing Scapin of Italy, for Ippon in the bronze medal fight. To round the day off Karen Roberts won the Silver in -63kg.
 
Georgina Singleton, Natalie Barry and Eric Bonti all fought on the third day of competition. Barry won her first fight well, but was unlucky to be beaten by the Swede who produced a throw which seemed to come from no where. Singleton, not helped by her draw, fought her way through the repercharge after losing to the world class Cuban, and took the Bronze medal. A superb performance by Bonti, saw him narrowly missing out on a Gold medal, but he was pleased to take away the Silver at an event of this class.
 
The final day, (alongside Callender as mentioned previously) was Andrew Machin's chance to repeat his Bronze result in the World Student Judo Championships, back in December. He had to be satisfied with 5th place at this event, even though his performance was every inch as good.
 
So, the judo team medal tally finished at 2 Silvers, 2 Bronzes, 2 5ths and a 7th place. Not only did this give a great boost to the overall GB team, but it was enough of an excuse to celebrate in downtown.
 
Karen Roberts
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World Championships 1999


WOMEN

-48kg

Ryoko Tamura (JPN)

-52kg
Noriko Narasaki (JPN)

-57kg
Driuli Gonzalez (CUB)

-63kg
Keiko Maeda (JPN)

-70kg
Sibelis Verenes (CUB)

-78kg

Noriko Anno (JPN)

+78kg
Beata Maksymow (POL)

OPEN
Daima Beltran (CUB)

MEN

-60kg
Manolo Poulot (CUB)

-66kg
Lardi Benboudaoud (FRA)

-73kg
Jimmy Pedro (USA)

-81kg
Graeme Randall (GBR)

-90kg
Hidehiko Yoshida (JPN)

-100kg
Kosei Inoue (JPN)

+100kg
Shinichi Shinohara (JPN)

OPEN
Shinichi Shinohara (JPN)














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