Montreal, October 28, 2018 – Judoka Étienne Briand barely missed the podium at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam, in the United Arab Emirates. He ended the competition in 5th place, after losing against none other than the top 2 judokas in the world.
In the bronze-medal fight in -81 kg, the Quebecois was up against Netherlander Frank De Wit, second on the world ranking. His opponent won by waza-ari at the end of the 4-minute bout, leaving Briand in 5th place.
“In the finale for bronze, I made a mistake by stepping back in the beginning, and my opponent took the opportunity to score. I haven’t been able to catch up after that,” explained the athlete from Sept-Îles.
Earlier in the day, during the preliminary rounds, he won by ippon against Hungarian Attila Ungvari and Jordanian Baker Alzidaneen.
Briand then lost by ippon during his third fight, against Iranian Saeid Mollaei, ranked first in the world in his category. He went through repechage, where he eliminated Czech Jaromir Musil by ippon, to secure his place in the finale for the third place.
“It was an okay result. I had a big first fight, and it affected me for the rest of the day. I lost against the first and second on the world ranking; I would have liked to win against one of them, but there were good points in both these fights,” said Briand.
The only woman representing Canada, Kelita Zupancic, lost by ippon on her first fight, against French Margaux Pinot, and didn’t get a ranking.
Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada
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