For his 2nd tournament after many months of recovery, Belgium’s Toma Nikiforov (-100 kg) hit hard by winning the silver medal at the Marrakech Grand Prix (March 8-10). Georgia’s Lasha Shavdatuashvili imitated him in -73 kg. For their part, Israel’s Gefen Primo (-48 kg) and Timna Nelson-Levy (-57 kg) took a good 3rd place.
By Ludovic Mauchien
He was so itchy that he had achieved a convalescence at great speed. Since his knee injury last August, Toma Nikiforov (-100 kg) thought only about one thing : to get back on mats as quickly as possible. The appetizer was complicated in Dusseldorf on February 24, with a first-round loss to Switzerland’s Imala. But the silver World Open medallist quickly found again the appetite in Morocco, for his 2nd tournament after his recovery. Final !
After dominating Khurramov in ¼ finals and Ozcicek-Takagi in the ½ finals, Toma Nikiforov had to bow to Ireland’s Fletcher in a tough fight concluded after 52 seconds of Golden Score.
A silver performance also made by Lasha Shavdatuashvili (-73 kg). 3rd in the Masters and in Dusseldorf, he is again on a podium. Winner of France’s Guillaume Chaine in 1/2 final (waza), the two-times Olympic medalist lost in the final against Cancun’s finalist, Russia’s Iartcev.
This Marrakech Grand Prix (March 8-10) also smiled on Israel’s Gefen Primo (-48 kg) and Timna Nelson-Levy (-57 kg).
The first one, 3rd of the last European championships at just 18 years old, won a beautiful bronze medal. Defeated in the ½ final by France’s Amandine Buchard, she then dominated Germany’s Nathalie Rouviere with O Soto Gari.
For her part, Timna Nelson-Levy was first beaten in the ¼ finals by Germany’s Coban, before brilliantly geeting the bronze medal by successively winning Slovenia’s Kajzer and France’s Automne Pavia in repechage.
At the conclusion of these 3 days of the Marrakech Grand Prix, Germany finishes 1st nation (2 gold, 1 silver, 4 bronze) ahead of Uzbekistan (2, 0, 2) and France (2, 0, 1).