IJF: You are the current World Champion. What are the main challenges to become world champion again in 2018? Abe Hifumi: My challenge is to win all my contests by Ippon at the 2018 World Championships as I could not accomplish this in Budapest.
IJF: Who will be your toughest competitor(s) and how do you prepare to face him/her/them? Abe Hifumi: All countries and competitors have their specialty. If I were to name a few they would be my rivals from Russia, Georgia, Korea, Israel and Ukraine. I will prepare in a way that I will be able to win against all of them.
IJF: Japanese athletes are among the top favorites competitors in all weight divisions. How do you cope with that extra pressure making you the man/woman to defeat? Abe Hifumi: Pressure is always associated with Competition. I accept the pressure and try to use it to my advantage.
IJF: What do you prefer in Judo and why? Abe Hifumi: The moment of joy when winning by Ippon, because it displays the result of my daily training and effort.
IJF: What did you learn in judo? Abe Hifumi: Courtesy and Manners.
OTHER EXPRESS INTERVIEW: • Teddy Riner (FRA) • Takato Naohisa (JPN) • Mayra Aguiar (BRA) • Clarisse Agbegnenou (FRA) • Dorjsuren Sumiya (MGL) • Asahina Sarah (JPN) • Nemanja Majdov (SRB) • Marius Vizer (IJF President)