Bronze medals for Powell and Adlington in Tashkent

British Judo basked in the glory for the third week in a row, as both Natalie Powell and Sarah Adlington claimed bronze in Tashkent on the final day of the tournament under the watch of Commonwealth Champion Euan Burton.

Both women who are Commonwealth Champions in their own right, have now picked up 120 points each towards their 2016 Olympic bids in the -78kg and +78kg categories respectively.

Promising Olympic prospect Powell beat Assunta Galeone by ippon for the bronze and she adds this to the gold medal that she claimed last weekend in Astana.

Earlier the Welshwoman lost her first match against Laia Talarn of Spain by a single yuko but she bounced back to beat Anastasiya Dmitrieva of Russia on penalties. Commonwealth Champion (Scotland).

She said: “The weekend was pretty good although it was quite hard to perform two weekends in a row/ I also competed in Glasgow too. I found the early rounds particularly hard as I was pretty tired I managed to compose myself for the bronze medal match. It was great to get two medals early on in the qualification period.” 

Adlington took an ippon victory over Gulsah Kocaturk of Turkey for bronze after finishing in fifth place at the same tournament as Powell last week.

Like Powell, she lost her first fight, to Iryna Kindzerska of Ukraine, but came back strong with an ippon win over Aydana Nagorova of Russia.

Coach Euan Burton, who coaxed the girls through the Glasgow European Open, Astana Grand and Tashkent Grand Prix events,  said: “It has been a tough three weeks of travelling and competing for Sarah and Natalie who have fought on back to back weekends in Glasgow, Astana and Tashkent.

“This showed today with neither of the girls fighting to their maximim abilities. That said, the ability to win medals when not on top form is an important quality in performance judo and both will have been happy to have come away with bronze medals.”

He added: They are both now looking forward to some well earned recovery and then starting preparations for the Asian tour that takes us on to the end of the year.”

Words by Donna Richardson. Images courtesy of IJF.