Judo joy for Germany’s Igl and Kazakhstan’s Saduakas

Day three of the judo competition at the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018 brought gold for Germany’s Rafaela Igl in the women’s -78kg category and Kazakhstan’s Berkarys Saduakas in the men’s -100kg.  

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Igl was in a class of her own at the Olympic Youth Park’s Asia Pavilion, winning all her bouts by ippon. Joining the competition at the quarter-final stage on account of her ranking, the German saw off Slovenia’s Metka Lobnik first of all and then Eduarda Rosa in the semis. 

Her opponent in the final was Margarita Gritsenko of Kazakhstan, who could do nothing to stop Igl’s seemingly inevitable march to gold. Lobnik and Rosa bounced back from their defeats to Igl to win bronzes. 

Saduakas did not enjoy such a smooth journey to the top of the podium in the men’s competition of the day. After defeating Islamic Republic of Iran’s Abolfazl Shojahei Bakhtiyari by ippon in his opening bout, the Kazakh judoka had to be at his very best to see off Hungary’s Zsombor Veg by shidos in the semi-final. 

Saduakas was then given another stern test by Georgia’s Ilia Sulamanidze in the gold medal bout, before winning by shidos once more. The bronze medals went to Veg and Omer Aydin of Turkey.