The last two significant results from Alex Cret (ROU) are two seventh places at the Warsaw Continental Open this season and in 2022 at the Prague Junior Open. Let's not forget that Cret is the holder of a bronze medal in a grand prix as well, won in Portugal in 2022. All this is to say that he was really not one of the favourites of the day and yet, after elimination phases fantastically conducted, Cret qualified for the final.
Alex Cret (ROU) vs Noel Van T End (NED)

From the second part of the draw, it was a more capped judoka who we found in the final. Noel Van T End is first of all a former world champion, who then went through a bad patch before returning in full possession of his capacity in Paris this year, a tournament which he won very well at the beginning of February. With the approach of the World Judo Championships - Doha 2023, it bodes very well for the Dutchman.

Would the better ranking of Van T End play a role? Or the fact that he had a bye in the first round? Everything can be an advantage. 29 seconds were enough for Van T End to propel Cret over his shoulders with a fantastic seoi-nage. The gold for Van T end puts him in a position to look at the next world championships. Cret is young, he still has a lot to learn, but today was definitely a big step up in his career.

Gold medallist, Noel Van T End (NED)

Peter Zilka (SVK) and Artem Bubyr (UKR), who both had excellent preliminaries even though they could not make it to the final, came together to play out the first match for a bronze medal. If the massive uchi-mata was expected from Peter Zilka, it was actually Artem Bukyr who produced the effort to score with a flying uchi-mata for ippon. This is the first medal at that level for the 2021 junior world bronze medallist. This morning he was pointing at a far off 125th place in the world. No doubt he will gain some ranking here.

Bronze medal contest, Roland Goz (HUN) vs Ivaylo Ivanov (BUL)
Bronze medal contest, Peter Zilka (SVK) vs Artem Bubyr (UKR)

Ivaylo Ivanov (BUL) believed for a long time that he could reach the final, before losing to Cret. He still had a chance to reach the podium against Roland Goz (HUN). As we passed the halfway mark there was just a shido apiece written on the scoreboard. The main attack came from Ivanov right after the final gong and was therefore not counted. The time for golden score has arrived. After 25 seconds of extra time, the same Ivanov dropped under his opponent's centre of gravity with a nicely executed kata-guruma to take the victory and the medal.

Medals, cheques and flowers were presented by Mr Naser AL TAMIMI, General Treasurer of the International Judo Federation and Ms Neşe ŞENSOY YILDIZ, European Champion

Final (-90 kg)

Bronze Medal Fights (-90 kg)

Final Results (-90 kg)

2. CRET Alex (ROU)

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See also