Dimitri Peters ended the host nation’s wait for a gold medal at the International Judo Federation (IJF) Düsseldorf Grand Prix by triumphing in the under 100 kilogram men’s division at the Mitsubishi Electric Halle.
The Olympic bronze medallist from London 2012 was in impressive form in the early rounds of the competition, with four straight ippons wins advancing him to a gold medal tie against Cuba’s Jose Armenteros.
Peters’ had seen his compatriot Sven Maresch fall to defeat in the under 81kg final yesterday and he looked to be on course to join his compatriot in claiming a silver medal, after falling two yukos behind.
The World Championship bronze medallist was able to bide his time, however, before eventually pinning his opponent to claim a match winning ippon.
Iran’s Javad Mahjoub threw Portugal’s Jorge Fonseca for an ippon to claim a podium position and Russia’s Adlan Bisultanov boosted his hopes of Olympic selection by winning his bronze medal bout with Sweden’s Martin Pacek on shido penalties.
Sweden were able to celebrate success, despite Pacek’s defeat, as Marcus Nyman repeated his victory from 2011 in the 90kg event.
Nyman used his experience to good effect against Krisztian Toth.
The Hungarian received three shido penalties in a scoreless contest, gifting the the gold medal to her rival.
The Swedish judoka had claimed major scalp of world champion Dong Han Gwak in the semi-finals and the South Korea was unable to take to the mat for the bronze medal contest, with his team-mate Jae Yun Kim the beneficiary.
Mongolia were also guaranteed a podium place due to Otgonbaatar Lkhagvasuren and Altanbagana Gantulga meeting in the second bronze medal bout.
Lkhagvasuren triumphed through an ippon.
In the final men’s competition of the weekend Ukraine’s Iakiv Khammo showed his potential, as the 21-year-old stormed to over 100kg gold.
The World Championship bronze medallist was penalised for passivity in the first minute of his bout against Islam El Shehaby but it immediately stirred him into action as he threw his Egyptian opponent to claim an ippon.
South Korea’s Kim Sung-Min replicated the feat in his bronze medal tie against Russia’s Andrey Volkov and Hungary’s Barna Bor defeated Cuba’s Alex Garcia Mendoza with a waza-ari.
In the women’s under 78kg division the world number two and three met in the gold medal encounter in a clash of two contenders for Rio 2016 Olympic medals.
The higher ranked judoka, Audrey Tcheumeo of France, got the better of Germany’s Luise Malzahn, silencing the home crowd with a waza-ari win.
Guusje Steenhuis beat her compatriot Marhinde Verkerk via shido penalties in their bronze medal contest, which could help her secure a place on the Dutch Olympic team.
World Championship silver medallist Anamari Velensek of Slovenia defeated Britain’s Natalie Powell with an ippon to secure the final podium position.
Olympic hosts Brazil will also left Germany with their hopes of success at the Games buoyed after Maria Suelen Altheman clinched the over 78kg heavyweight gold medal by defeating China's world champion Yu Song with an ippon.
South Korea’s Kim Minjeong and Kim Jiyoun secured bronze medals by recording ippon and waza-ari victories over China’s Sisi Ma and Japan’s Nami Inamori respectively.
With the conclusion of the Grand Prix, attention will now turn to judo’s Rio 2016 test event, scheduled to take place at Carioca Arena 1 in the Olympic Park.
The women’s under 52kg and 63kg categories along with the men’s under 66kg and 81kg divisions are due to be in action on March 8 and 9.
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