The last Grand Slam before the European Games in Minsk (June 22-25 for judo) saw the 3rd success of Israel’s Sagi Muki in 2019, and his 5th final (-81 kg), undoubtedly the strongman of the IJF circuit in this first part of the year.
Hidayet Heydarov is, him, on his way back. For his 3rd competition since his World bronze medal, the young Azerbaijani wins in -73 kg. Israel’s Gefen Primo (-52 kg) clinches her 2nd podium of the year. She left the Baku Grand Slam (May 10-12) with a bronze medal, as did her compatriot Tohar Butbul (-73 kg).
By Ludovic Mauchien
Since his European champion title in Tel Aviv, no one can stop him anymore. 7th final and 5th win in one year ! To believe that this title, won in his new weight category, gave him the surplus of confidence that it seemed to lack him until then. Sagi Muki (-81kg) made another big impression at the Baku Grand Slam. Winner of Belgium’s Mathias Casse in the ½ final, his winner in the Abu Dhabi final last October, the Israeli defeated Bulgaria’s Ivanov in the final.
In -73 kg, the intergenerational fight made in Azerbaijan occurred in the ½ final and saw the victory of the young Hidayet Heydarov, 21 years old, against his elder Rustam Orujov, 27 years old. In the final, the World bronze medalist dominated Israel’s Tohar Butbul to win his the 1st Grand Slam of his career.
In -52 kg, Israel’s Gefen Primo won her 3rd medal on the IJF World Tour, again in bronze. Beaten by Japan’s Shishime in the ½ final, she then won against Switzerland Tschopp in repechage.