If Tara Babulfath (SWE) did it on day one, today belonged to Lubjana Piovesana (AUT). The Austrian was in her first grand slam final, against the top seed Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard (CAN) but she had nerves of steel, playing out a tactical battle to come out on top.
Final, Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard (CAN) vs Lubjana Piovesana (AUT)

Beauchemin-Pinard (CAN) made light work of her first opponent Sevinch Isokova (UZB) for a straightforward ippon and followed it up just as directly against Magdalena Krssakova (AUT). In the quarter-final, Geke van den Berg (NED) tried her best to disrupt the Canadian’s flow before being trapped by a clever osae-komi from which she was unable to escape. 

In Pool C, second seed Laura Fazliu (KOS) began her quest against Nadia Guimendego (CAF) with an ippon throw and then completed a double waza-ari scoreline to despatch Agatha Schmidt (GER). However, she hit a roadblock against Lubjana Piovesana (AUT) in the quarter-final, settling for a place in the repechage. It wasn’t going to get easier for the Kosovar, who was up against third seed and world number five Gili Sharir (ISR) there.

Gold medallist, Lubjana Piovesana (AUT)

Sharir also didn’t find her rhythm straight away, receiving a shido before throwing for ippon in golden score against Laura Vazquez Fernandez (ESP) in round two. She was fortunate against Kamila Badurova (AIN), who bowed out after receiving three penalties. The Israeli was not her usual self against Joanne van Lieshout (NED) in the quarter-finals either, who stunned her 3 minutes into golden score by countering a sode-tsuri-komi-goshi attempt for ippon.  

Hungarian fourth seed Szofi Ozbas executed a very well controlled transition from a waza-ari throw to a waza-ari hold against Zarina Saripova (KAZ) to seal the victory. Her second opponent was Zalina Zuraeva (AIN) who gifted her a win after a hansoku-make due to three penalties. She then took care of Maylín del Toro Carvajal (CUB), setting up a tantalising semi-final with Beauchemin-Pinard. The Canadian Olympic bronze medallist once again started on the front foot, attacking Ozbas and scoring waza-ari before sealing the victory and earning a ticket to the final, in ne-waza. 

Bronze medal contest, Gili Sharir (ISR) vs Szofi Ozbas (HUN)

The second semi-final, between Piovesana and Van Lieshout, went to golden score. After eight minutes and 30 seconds total fighting time, the Austrian rolled her over with sumi-gaeshi for waza-ari. The fearless Austrian then stepped into her first World Judo Tour final.

In the all-Dutch bronze medal match, Van den Berg started with a warning as Van Lieshout took the fight to her, with the former getting two penalties. She kept forcing Van den Berg to commit, as Van Lieshout executed a ko-soto-gake for ippon and the first bronze. 

Bronze medal contest, Geke van den Berg (NED) vs Joanne van Lieshout (NED)

It was an attacking start from Ozbas in the other contest, with a seoi-otoshi aiding her for a waza-ari against Sharir. A second score followed as she attempted an ashi-waza, helping her to the medal by ippon. 

The final saw Beauchemin-Pinard start on the attack, Piovesana choosing to defend. It meant that she took two warnings before the Canadian got one herself as the contest went to golden score. Seconds into it, Piovesana almost won with a sumi-gaeshi before a review ruled it out. Beauchemin-Pinard then received her second penalty. The top seed lost concentration for a second and Piovesana capitalised, throwing Pinard to the floor with a huge ura-nage for ippon and a first gold at a grand slam.

Medals, cheques and flowers were presented by Dr Laszlo Toth, IJF Vice President, EJU President & President of the Hungarian Judo Association, and Mr Rashad Rasullu, General Secretary of the Azerbaijan Judo Federation
See also