Final Countdown for Paris Qualification

This weekend, our fighters enter the final throws of Paris qualification as our Olympic team competes at the Abu Dhabi World Championships and our Paralympic team competes at the IBSA Georgia Grand Prix.

The IBSA Georgia Grand Prix starts on Saturday with Miles Soloman the sole GB representative in action as he fights in the J2 -73kg category.

Sunday will see Dan Powell (J1 -90kg), Evan Molloy (J2 -90kg), Kirsten Taylor (J2 +70kg), Chris Skelley and Jack Hodgson (both J2 +90kg) in action.

Powell enters seeded number 3 in the world rankings and is in fine form having taken silver and bronze medals at his previous two competitions, the IBSA Antalya Grand Prix and Heidelberg Grand Prix respectively.

Molloy currently occupies 7th position in the World rankings following a 7th place finish at the Antalya Grand Prix and 5th at the Heidelberg Grand Prix.

Skelley and Hodgson sit in 5th and 8th place respectively with just one spot available to compete for Paralympic GB in Paris. Hodgson has picked up bronze medals at the last two events in Antalya and Heidelberg, whilst Skelley makes a welcome return to competition having missed the last two events.

Taylor currently sits just outside the qualification places in 10th with the Scottish judoka’s best performance of 2024 coming at the Heidelberg Grand Prix back in February where she finished 5th.

Soloman joined the IBSA World Tour in late 2023, but despite his lack of experience at this level, he placed 7th at the Heidelberg Grand Prix earlier this year.

Sunday will also see the start of the IJF World Championships in Abu Dhabi. Whilst Olympic qualification does not close until 23 June, for many, this will be the final qualification event of their Paris qualification.

There is no GB Judo representation on the opening day with Chelsie Giles withdrawing due to injury.

Monday will see Nekoda Smythe-Davis and Lele Nairne compete in the -57kg category whilst Lachlan Moorhead will be the sole GB competitor Tuesday following Lucy Renshall’s withdrawal through injury.

Wednesday will be the busiest day from a GB perspective with Olympic places still to be decided in the -70kg and -78kg categories.

Mima Yeats-Brown is the top-ranked Brit in the -70kg category following her bronze medal at the Kazakhstan Grand Slam last weekend, teammate Kelly Petersen-Pollard claimed bronze the previous week at the Dushanbe Grand Slam.

Emma Reid has strengthened her position for -78kg selection with back-to-back bronze medals at the Kazakhstan and Dushanbe Grand Slams the last two weekends. She will be joined by Natalie Powell who also occupies an Olympic qualifying position.

Jamal Petgrave is the final GB Judo participant in action as he competes in the -90kg category.

Action at the IBSA Georgia Grand Prix starts at 9am (BST) on Saturday and Sunday with Final Block to follow at 3pm (Saturday) and 2pm (Sunday).

Watch the action live on the IBSA Judo YouTube channel

You can watch all the action from the Doha World Championships LIVE at each day.

Final Block is due to start at 3pm (BST) each day with the Preliminary Round start times to be confirmed at the Draw on Saturday.

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