What do a Japanese and a Polish judoka have in common apart from the colours of their flags? In principle, nothing, but in Budapest two women were united by a common goal, the gold medal and a way to obtain it, through good judo.
Megumi Horikawa defeating Angelika Szymanska

The first is called Megumi Horikawa, who you know from her name does not come from Warsaw. The Japanese occupies a discreet position in the world ranking, 27, but when looking closely at her history, things change. Second in Tel Aviv, third in Baku and a host of medals in the last five years, Horikawa appeared in Hungary spearheading the Japanese team in this category. First she had the pleasure of eliminating the Dutch and ninth in the world, Sanne Vermeer. Second in line she eliminated the local legend, Hedvig Karakas. As she was on her way, she easily outclassed Australia's Katharina Haecker, before giving Britain's European champion Gemma Howell a cold shower in the semi-finals. Her four victims occupy better places in the ranking, which means that on the professional circuit everything is possible.

Megumi Horikawa defeating Angelika Szymanska

Angelika Szymanska also had a route full of traps. Her first round was relatively uneventful against China's Jing Tang. So, like Horikawa, she had to compete with more seasoned women and all of them were cooked by the Polish woman over a slow fire. First the Israeli Gili Sharir and then the Canadian Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard, before unceremoniously pushing the Brazilian Ketleyn Quadros out of her way.

Megumi Horikawa defeating Angelika Szymanska

The Japanese looked like the bullet train, marking waza-ari before people even knew the fight had begun. Horikawa executed a massive ashi-waza technique which didn't get the full landing on the back. From then on, she closed like an oyster and Szymanska did not have the knife in her repertoire to open it. It was indeed total engagement from both women. For those who like statistics, Japan's four gold medals in as many finals should be highlighted.

Megumi Horikawa defeating Angelika Szymanska

The first bronze was South American. Venezuelan Anriquelis Barrios unhesitatingly defeated Quadros, who was still thinking about her lost semi-final. A waza-ari in the form of a ko-soto-gari that arrived very early and mismanagement of the fight cost the Brazilian the medal. The Venezuelan was better and more intelligent.

Anriquelis Barrios defeating Ketleyn Quadros

Maylin Del Toro Carvajal wanted Spanish to continue being spoken on the tatami, but for that she had to neutralise Gemma Howell, who prefers English. Del Toro was always ahead to the attack, so logically Howell was penalised three times.

Maylin Del Toro Carvajal defeating Gemma Howell
Medals, cheques and mascots were presented by H.E. Milo Đukanović, President of Montenegro and Mr Vlad Marinescu, Director General of the International Judo Federation
See also