Booth and Popovici: halted in the first round, but potential abounds

Jumber Meladze gets unwelcome surprise from American Judoka
11 August 2022
Nikola Petrovic gets two bouts in Guayaquil
13 August 2022

Montréal, August 12, 2022 – Two Canadian athletes were in action on the tatami this Friday in Guayaquil, Ecuador at the Junior U-21 World Judo Championships. Yet while Brae Booth and David Popovici may have sadly saw their day come to an end after just one bout, they demonstrated their potential on the international stage today.

In the U-73 kg class, British Columbia’s Brae Booth faced American Isabella Garriga early on in the day. Booth attempted several attacks, but Garriga finally was able to counter one of the Canadian’s attempts, and the latter scored an ippon to capture the win.

“Brae could have very well been able to advance further in the tournament, she’s very strong and was really able to show that in her only bout of the day. I think she may have lacked some experience against Garriga. In the end, she lost because of a small mistake, not because she wasn’t as strong as her opponent. The future will be interesting for her,” explained Coach Daniella Krukower.

“Brae made a small technical error, and her opponent used that to her advantage to get the win. Obviously, Brea was hoping for a little more, but it’s the World Juniors, and things like that can happen sometimes,” added Coach Sasha Mehmedovic.

David Popovici (U-83 kg) faced Japanese judoka Daisuke Takeichi in his first bout of the day. The fight was tough, and the native of Québec was penalized three times – which gave the victory to his opponent.

“David was on top of his game during the bout. He showed a lot of character – but his penalties were very costly. This experience at the World Juniors will push him to work harder and he’ll be even better next time, I’m sure of it,” commented Krukower.

Saturday, it’s Nikola Petrovic turn to step onto the tatami, as the last Canadian to compete in Guayaquil. He’ll face New Zealand’s Axel Nightingale in his first fight of the day in the U-100 kg class.


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