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Lévesque Fifth in Bulgaria

Montreal, January 29, 2012 – Marylise Lévesque finished in fifth place, Sunday, at the Judo World Cup in Sofia, Bulgary.  

The Quebecois judoka took her first match with an ippon against England’s Natalie Powell, prior to being defeated by the Ukraine’s Maryna Pryshchepa.  In overtime, Lévesque bested Italy’s Assunta Galeone with an ippon.  In the bronze medal final, Lévesque was bettered by China’s Ji Zhang – who won the medal with an ippon.  “I am a bit disappointed, because I came here with the intention of being on the podium,”
Lévesque commented.  “I’m here to earn points for my Olympic qualification, and a fifth place finish doesn’t really give me enough to get closer to that.”

Lévesque’s coach, Nicolas Gill had prepared a plan for her duel with Zhang, “He told me to watch out for her left hand, because she’d used it for that sort of attack before – and that’s exactly what happened.  She threw me with a waza-ari and afterwards I couldn’t get myself out of that position, so she was able to complete another waza-ari,” analyzed Lévesque.  

Also in action on the tatami in the Under 78kg category, Quebec’s Amy Cotton and Catherine Roberge were not ranked at the end of competitions today.  Cotton lost her first bout when her adversary, China’s Jie Zhang scored an ippon.  Roberge also was defeated in her first match against South Korea’s Mi Jeong-Gyeong.

Kelita Zupancic, from Ontario, finished her weekend in seventh place in the Under 70kg class.  Firstly she took on the Ukraine’s Tetyana Savenko with a waza-ari, then defeated England’s Gemma Gibbons with a yuko; Zupancic was then bested by Spain’s Maria Bernabeu Avomo.  Zupancic moved onto overtime, but was unable to get past Japan’s Karen Nunira in their first match against one another.

Only four competitions remain for judokas to earn qualification points for the London 2012 Olympic Games.  That in mind, the who’s who of judo will be present and focused at next weekend’s Paris Grand Slam – the most important match in the last four years.  

The Arlon Open

Quebec’s Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard was the highest ranking Canadian at the Arlon Open in Belgium this weekend.  The Canadian won her first two matches, then took on Algeria’s Shanhez Bour in the first round – earning a berth into elimination round.  Beauchemin-Pinard then experienced the same series of combats prior to finally succumbing to the Netherland’s Eveline Donkers.  

Stéfanie Tremblay also contributed a picture-perfect series of matches with two wins in the round robin, but a loss in the first round at the hand of France’s Claire Pierret.  Alix Renaud-Roy (Under 70kg) also saw her weekend end in the first round, where she was defeated by France’s Irène La Villonière.  Renaud-Roy earned herself two victories and one loss in pool competitions.

Fortified with a win and a loss each in the pools competition, Quebec’s Audrée Francis-Méthot (Under 52kg) and Élodie Lavoie (Under 63kg), were forced to admit defeat in the first round; Francis-Méthot was bested by the Ukraine’s Shushana Hevondian, while Lavoie was bettered by Spain’s Meitxell Bruteau.

Quebec’s Sarha-Myriam Mazouz (Under 70kg) and Ontario’s Nicole Jenicek (Under 57kg) each earned one win and two losses in the round robin, but in the end it was not sufficient to earn them access to the table.  Nova Scotia’s Whitney Lohnes (Under 48kg) and Quebec’s Ecaterina Guica (Under 57kg) and Marie-Ève De Villers-Matte (Under 70kg) were unable to register wins in their pools.

The Visé Open

Canada’s male judokas were competing at the Visé Open, also in Belgium.  The five Canadians taking part in the action were unable to achieve final rankings.  Quebec’s Patrick Gagné provided the best result however, with three victories and a loss in the Under 66kg category.

Michael Fortin-Demers (Under 66kg), Alister Ward (Under 66kg), Arthur Margelidon (Under 81kg) and Scott McGrandle  (Under 81kg) all were defeated in their first bouts.


Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada