Tuesday,20 November, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1390, (19 - 25 April 2018)
Tuesday,20 November, 2018
Issue 1390, (19 - 25 April 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Backwards flip

At the African Judo Seniors Championship in Tunisia, Egypt slipped

Abdel-Aal
Abdel-Aal

With 10 medals, Egypt placed fourth in the final standings behind hosts Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco, reports Inas Mazhar.

The Egyptians claimed three gold, four silver and three bronze medals with three players being placed fifth and two finishing seventh.

Egypt participated with 10 men and six women in the three-day event held at Al-Menzah Sports Palace in the capital Tunis. Tunisia was crowned champion of the 39th edition with 15 medals: five gold, four silver and six bronze.

Algeria followed in second with a total of 16 medals — four gold, three silver and nine bronze. Though Morocco grabbed the same number of medals as Egypt, it was placed third with one gold more. The Atlas Lions won four gold, three silver and three bronze medals.

Senegal came in fifth place with only two silver and two bronze medals.

With the four top ranked countries in the final medals standings being North Africans, it’s clear that they are leading the sport on the Dark Continent while other countries need more development on the mat.

Altogether 24 nations took part in the event with a total of 175 players — 112 men and 63 women. In the final teams event, the gold medal went to Tunisia followed by Algeria, Cameroon and Morocco.

For the Egyptians, the fourth place finish reveals a slow but sure decline for the second year in a row. With two gold, two silver and seven bronze medals, Egypt finished third in the overall standings of the 2017 African Judo Seniors Championships held in Antananarivo, Madagascar, during which all the Egyptians managed to reach the podium in all the events they featured in.

The year before, in 2016, the Pharaohs were victorious as they won eight medals (four gold, two silver, two bronze) in the men’s individual competition, which had then granted Egypt a berth at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. That year, Egyptian judokas were at their peak. In addition to the medals won at the Tunisia 2016 African Championships, the Egyptians placed fifth in two weight categories. Thus, Egypt was first in the individual competition with Tunisia and Algeria both behind.

This year in Tunisia, in the team competition, the Egyptians were second behind the home team. Algerians ended in third place.

Egypt’s three gold medals were won by Ramadan Darwish in the -100kg after beating arch-rival Lyes Bouyacoub of Algeria who claimed the silver medal. In the final, the Egyptian avenged his loss last year of the title to Bouyacoub. The two bronze medals went to Algeria’s Billel Belhimer and Tunisia’s Anis ben Khaled.

The second gold was collected by Mohamed Abdel-Aal in the -81kg. The Egyptian defended his title for the third year in a row, beating Morocco’s Achraf Moutii in the final match.

Egypt’s third gold medal went to Mohamed Abdel-Mawgoud who beat fellow teammate Ahmed Abdel-Rahman in the -66kg in an all-Egyptian final.

The four Egyptian  silver medals were claimed by Ahmed Abdel-Rahman in the -66kg, Maisaraa Al-Naggar in the open category, Mohamed Mohyeldine in the -73kg and Lamya Al-Zenan in the women’s -57kg.

The three bronze medals were garnered by Hazem Ali in the -90kg, Mohamed Abdel-Rahman in the -81kg and Kariman Shafik in the women’s plus 78kg.

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