Étienne Briand Surprised Late in Fight

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Montréal, June 9, 2021 – After two early wins on Wednesday at the Judo World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, Étienne Briand faced a tough opponent in the third round of the under-81 kg draw, losing by ippon to Georgia’s Luka Maisuradze, third place finisher at the 2019 World Championships. Briand did not rank at today’s event.

Briand stayed in control for the first few minutes of the bout, while his opponent received two penalties. However, the Canadian was caught off-guard when Maisuradze attacked in the final moments of regulation time.

“I dropped the ball! I was ahead because of the penalties and was in no danger whatsoever. But I let him back into the fight and got caught out. It’s no secret that the Georgians are strong when it comes to infighting, and he took advantage of my lapse in attention,” explained Briand.

Photo Gabriela Sabau, IJF

Earlier in the day, the Québécois from Sept-Îles ousted Uruguay’s Alain Aprahamian by ippon before defeating Kyrgyzstan’s Asad Masabirov by waza-ari.

“The first fight was basically a warm-up and I managed it well. After that, I was able to stay in control all the way to the third round, but once things got a bit tougher, I wasn’t up to it. I hadn’t fought [Maisuradze] in two years and I could feel it,” added Briand.

Briand also talked about the long road to the 2021 World Championships. After sitting out the Grand Slam in Budapest and the Pan American Championships in Guadalajara to focus on his studies last fall, the doctoral student in economics was able to squeeze in three events before heading to Hungary for the much-anticipated championships.

“Because of the health measures, my prep was definitely not the same as usual, but I don’t want to use that as an excuse. The federation did a good job of allowing us to train with several opponents to prepare for the worlds. It went really well,” he concluded.

In today’s gold medal final, Matthias Casse of Belgium beat Tato Grigalashvili of Georgia to claim the world title in the under-81 kg weight class. Frank de Wit of the Netherlands and Anri Egutidze of Portugal claimed the two bronze medals.

On Thursday, Mohab El Nahas will be the only Canadian in action in Budapest. He will compete in the under-90 kg event.

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Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada

Patrick Esparbès
Chief Operating Officer
Judo Canada
(514) 668-6279
p.esparbes@judocanada.org