Kosovo's Nora Gjakova wins judo -57kg gold

Nora Gjakova of Team Kosovo defeats Tsukasa Yoshida of Team Japan during the Women’s Judo 57kg Semifinal of Table B on day three of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Nippon Budokan on July 26, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.
Nora Gjakova of Team Kosovo defeats Tsukasa Yoshida of Team Japan during the Women’s Judo 57kg Semifinal of Table B on day three of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Nippon Budokan on July 26, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.

The new Olympic champion beat France's Sarah Leonie Cysique in the final, after Japan's YOSHIDA Tsukasa and Jessica Klimkait triumphed in the two bronze medal matches. 

Nora Gjakova of Kosovo has been crowned Olympic champion after the -57kg judo final against France's Sarah Leonie Cysique was ended for safety reasons due to a head-dive by the French judoka.

The Kosovan athlete, who won bronze at the 2021 world championships in Budapest, can now add Olympic gold to her resume after a swift end to the title-deciding bout.

Gjakova has built a strong reputation for herself on the international circuit prior to Tokyo 2020, winning medals at the past four European championships. However, the coveted Olympic title - won at judo's spiritual home, the Nippon Budokan - is sure to be her crowning achievement.

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics have become a family affair for Gjakova, with her brother finishing seventh in the -73kg competition earlier today (26 July). It makes them the second set of siblings to compete in judo over the past two days, after ABE Uta and Hifumi each won gold for Japan in the women's -52kg and men's -66kg finals.

Cysique, who went into the final having beaten world champion and world no. 1 Jessica Klimkait in the semis, looked bitterly disappointed by the defeat. However, after a hugely impressive Olympic journey, the silver medal she walks away with is something she can be proud of.

In the two other medal-deciding matches, YOSHIDA Tsukasa of Japan beat Eteri Liparteliani by ippon for the first bronze and Jessica Klimkait took the second with a win over Kaja Kajzer of Slovenia.