Kelly Petersen-Pollard underlined her status as one of the future stars of British Judo with a Silver medal on her Grand Prix debut.
An accomplished performance in Croatia saw Petersen-Pollard secure her second medal in as many weeks, following a Gold medal at the European Open last week.
She was only denied top spot on the podium when she was awarded Hansoku-make in the Gold medal contest for attacking against the straight arm, which handed the Final to Slovenia’s Anna Pogacnik.
The young Brit had to overcome fellow Brit Jemima Yeats-Brown in semi-final for the second time this month and again came out victorious following Yeats-Brown’s disqualification.
Petersen-Pollard went on the offensive in the corner of the mat and as she was in the throwing motion, the officials deemed Yeats-Brown to have used her head to cushion the throw – a slightly harsh decision when watched again on the replay.
The two Brits had breezed through the opening rounds of the competition following byes in the opening round.
Poland’s Eliza Wroblewska posed no problems for Petersen-Pollard in the second round as she worked her opponent to the ground after 90 seconds and forced her to submit.
Heavy pressure from the Brit forced Germany’s Julie Hoelteroff to pick up three shidos in the Quarter Final to set up the all-British clash in the Semi Final.
Despite the disqualification in the Final, Petersen-Pollard reflected on a fantastic Grand Prix debut.
“Today was challenging and coming straight from Bosnia to Croatia was tiring, but it was great to get lots of fights and experience under my belt.”
“A semi-final against my teammate is always tough but all-in-all a great day!”
“It was a big mistake in the final but a lot to learn and work on, and I’m looking forward to what’s next and the next 3 years building up to Paris.”
Yeats-Brown wasted no time early on in the day with a speedy 30-second victory in the Second Round over Croatia’s Andela Voiolic.
World No.30 Hilde Jager posed no issue in the Quarter Final as two waza-aris accounted for the Dutch fighter to set up the clash with Petersen-Pollard.
Yeats-Brown couldn’t find the win needed to join her compatriot on the podium though in the Bronze medal contest. An honest attacking display from the Brit saw her countered twice by Switzerland’s Alina Lengweiler and had to settle for Fifth place.
Earlier in the day, Eric Ham exited the competition at the second round stage of the -73kg competition, while Dan Powell was eliminated at the first hurdle.
The final day of competition sees in-form Emma Reid in action once again in the -78kg division whilst Jamal Petgrave competes in the -90kg competition.
Action starts at 11:00am with Final Block scheduled to commence at 16:00.
British Judo will bring you a recap of how all your British fighters perform each day and you can follow the action on the British Judo social media channels. You can also watch the action live on the British Judo homepage.