Beyond her brilliant results, the image we remember of Tomita is that of her teammate Sarah Asahina, carrying her on her back, after the 2021 world final, in what is considered one of the finest gestures of fair play in recent years. Yet today, the Japanese champion was not physically diminished and she made her way through the elimination phase without incident.
On the other side, we had the Chinese athlete Shiyan Xu, who spent barely more than 4 minutes in all on the tatami during the first rounds.
Tomita was straight into the attack and kept the pace throughout normal time, pushing Xu to be penalised twice. In golden score, after a little less than a minute, the Chinese judoka was penalised for the third time. Gold was for Tomita, the third gold medal in a grand slam for the Japanese judoka.
Gold #4 for Japan!🇯🇵 Tomita wins the +78kg Tashkent Grand Slam title!#JudoTashkent #Judo #Uzbekistan #Sport #Olympics #RoadToParis2024 #OlympicQualifiers #Tashkent pic.twitter.com/nlU8rdSaCs— Judo (@Judo) March 5, 2023
In the first match for a bronze medal, Hilal Ozturk (TUR) was opposed by Sophio Somkhishvili (GEO). After Somkhishvili was penalised twice already, Hilal Ozturk was clearly aiming for the third shido to be given to her opponent and she got it. With one minute left, Somkhishvili was penalised a third time for passivity and the bronze medal was for Hilal Ozturk.
China had one more medal chance thanks to Xin Su, opposed by Kazakh Kamila Berlikash. Su didn't give any chance to her opponent, scoring a big, well-intended waza-ari from a left hip movement, concluded with an immobilisation for ippon.