Montréal, February 22, 2015 – The Ontarian Priscilla Gagne climbed to the third step of the podium in the under 52 kg class, Sunday, at the Para-Judo World Cup presented in Eger, Hungary.
Quebec-resident Justin Karn also performed well at this weekend’s competition, which was a qualifier for the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The Canadian came away with a 5th place classification in the under 60 kg division on Friday.
“This was a good performance at the first ever World Cup for visually-impaired athletes,” Judo Canada Sport Director Andrzej Sądej explained. “With 186 athletes representing 31 countries, this was the largest visually-impaired event ever. The Canadian team can be proud of their performances.”
Gagne claimed the bronze medal after winning three of her four matches. She began her day with a win by ippon over the Japanese Ishi, before getting a taste of her own medicine against the German Brussig. She bounced back in her next bout, winning again by ippon versus the Turk Celik, and then followed that up with a victory by waza-ari against the Russian Potapova.
Exempted from the first round, Justin Karn started strong with two wins by ippon over the Argentine David Emanual Gomez and the Spaniard David Garcia Orozco. He then went on to lose a close fight against the South Korean Min Jae Lee, who came out on top by a shido. The Longueuil-resident would eventually succumb to defeat in one of the two bronze medal duels, falling to the Russian Vitalii Koriakin by ippon.
“His semifinal bout against the Korean opponent was extremely close. Justin managed to come back from a waza-ari and yuko deficit, losing by just one penalty in the end,” Sądej added.
“I fought hard today, and earned some fairly important points for my qualification,” Karn mentioned. “I’m already looking forward to my next qualifier, with my sights set squarely on a trip to Rio.”
Two other Canadians were in action in Eger, but both came up short, falling to the eventual bronze medalists in their respective categories.
Tony Walby came away victorious in his first bout in the under 90 kg class but was subsequently defeated in his next fight by the Russian Malik Kurbanov, while Alex Radoman was beaten in his opening match in the under 81 kg division.
“Tony lost to the reigning World Championships runner-up after a really good fight,” Sądej added. “Both fighters scored yukos and he was down by one penalty with 20 seconds to go. He attempted a series of attacks and was eventually countered, which cost him the match.”
“Alex drew a multiple World Champion in the first round, Cyril Jonard of France, and he fought a close match for 3 minutes before eventually succumbing to a superb attack by the Frenchman.”
“When all was said and done, none of the Canadians disappointed!”
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Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada