Montreal, March 16, 2019 – After seeing their teammates Christa Deguchi and Jessica Klimkait on the podium on Friday, Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard and Étienne Briand also contributed to Canada’s medal count at the Ekaterinburg Grand Slam, in Russia. Both athletes won the bronze medal in their respective categories.
Fighting in -81 kg, Étienne Briand earned his place on the third step of the podium after defeating Belgian Matthias Casse, 10th on the world ranking, in overtime.
By receiving a third penalty, Casse automatically made Briand the winner after a bout that lasted over 9 minutes.
“It was a long fight, his style was very defensive. I couldn’t make him fall, but it’s okay for the fight to end this way,” said Briand, who hadn’t won a Grand Slam medal since May 2017. “A Grand Slam medal is always satisfying. It was about time for such a performance!”
After winning his first two bouts, Briand faced Netherlander Frank De Wit, ranked second in the world. It was impossible to declare a winner after regulation time, meaning the fight went into overtime, during which the Netherlander won. “He always gives me a hard time. It was a close fight and either of us could have won, but today, he seemed in better shape than I was.”
In repechage, Briand defeated the Rio Olympic champion, Russian Khasan Khalmurzaev. 30 seconds were long enough for the 26-year-old to earn a spot in the bronze-medal bout. “He had a difficult fight before mine. I was confident I could make him fall.”
Fighting the same category, Antoine Valois-Fortier was eliminated after his second fight, by Matthias Casse. Before that, he had defeated Vladimir Zoloev, from Kyrgystan.
Beauchemin-Pinard in Third Place
On the women’s team, Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard stood on a Grand Slam podium for the first time since switching to -63 kg. “I’m really happy. It’s a nice progression since I changed my weight category,” said the Quebecoise.
Beauchemin-Pinard won her bronze-medal fight against Polish Agata Ozdoba-Blach with a floor sequence.
“I was in control, but I was worried because I felt tired,” explained Beauchemin-Pinard after two of her previous fights went into overtime. “The grip was good and I was moving well. The more it went on, the better I felt, and I gained confidence.”
Earlier in the day, Beauchemin-Pinard had defeated Valentina Kostenko, from Russia, and Gankhaich Bold, from Mongolia, before losing the semifinal against British Lucy Renshall.
Also competing in Russia, Ontarian Kelita Zupancic placed 7th in the -70 kg category after being eliminated by German Laura Vargas Koch. She had previously won her first two fights, before being defeating in the quarterfinal.
Shady El Nahas (-100 kg) will be the only Canadian in action in Russia on Sunday.
Langlois Wins Bronze in Cordoba
Also on Saturday, in Argentina, Bradley Langlois and Gueorgui Poklitar both fought for the bronze medal at the Cordoba Pan American Open.
Bradley Langlois (-73 kg) won his first fight against Argentinian Igor Prado before being defeated by Mexican Eduardo Araujo in the second one.
The Quebecois then eliminated Argentinian Francisco Galeano in repechage to earn a place in one of the bronze-medal bouts. Langlois ended strong by defeating his opponent, Mexican Gilberto Cardoso, by ippon to earn a bronze medal.
Poklitar (-60 kg) started off strong by winning his first two bouts, against Argentinian Hernan Birbrier and American Jacob More.
The Montrealer was then defeated by ippon in the semifinal fight against French Thomas Macrez, who went on to win the silver medal.
Poklitar ended the day by facing Steven Morocho in the bronze-medal bout. However, the Quebecois was eliminated by ippon by the Ecuadorian, and ended in 5th place.
Mohab El Nahas (-90 kg) and Michael Guerault (-100 kg) will be the ones to watch on Sunday in Cordoba.
Junior European Cup
At the Coimbre Junior European Cup, in Portugal, Julien Frascadore had the best Canadian result with a 7th place in -66 kg.
“Of course I would have liked a medal, but I still think it was a good day. I made a few mistakes, but I’ll learn from it. I’m happy with the performance rather than the result,” said the judoka.
After losing in the quarterfinal, the Canadian judoka won in repechage against Italian Alessandro Bosis. His journey came to an end in the next round, where Portuguese Bruno Barros defeated him by ippon.
“My strategy wasn’t strong enough to win. I should learn to manage my fights better and work on my fitness to be at my best,” he mentioned.
Also in -66 kg, Yanis Hachemi and Mitchell Markwat were eliminated after their second bout, and Dontae De Jesus after his first one.
Also competing, Anthony Henry, Daniel McCristall and Hakim Chala were all eliminated after their second fight in -60 kg.
Daniel Chosack-Barkay and Max Teewen were also eliminated after two bouts, in -73 kg. Sava Antic and Daniel Maman were defeated after the first one.
On the women’s team, Sierra Tanner went into repechage in -63 kg, but she was eliminated after the first round. She previously had a score of one victory and one loss.
“It’s Sierra’s first tournament as a Junior,” said the national coach Jean-Pierre Cantin. “It’s a good start, I’m happy with her performance. We have something to build on for the future.”
Also fighting in -63 kg, Alicia Fiandor and Isabelle Harris were eliminated after their second fight. Jordann Warner and Rachel Krapman were eliminated in the first round.
In -57 kg, Eibhleann Alexander and Taeya Koliaska had a score of one victory and one loss, while Kiera Westlake was eliminated in the first round.
Tami Goto and Virginia Nemeth were both eliminated in the first round in -48 kg.
The Coimbre Junior European Cup will continue on Sunday.
Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada
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