GB judoka set for Abu Dhabi Grand Slam

The IJF World Tour returns tomorrow as we enter the final quarter of the 2022 season with the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam.

British Judo have enjoyed medal success as past versions of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam and we will be hoping for more of the same over the coming three days of competition as 14 GB judoka are in action.


Nekoda Smythe-Davis (Club: Ealing JC; Coach: Jo Crowley) makes her World Tour return following the birth of her daughter. Smythe-Davis last competed on the World Tour in 2019 when she won gold at the Brasilia Grand Slam. Smythe-Davis made a winning return to competition as she recently won gold at the Riccione European Open last month.

Smythe-Davis has been drawn against Jana Ziegler (GER) in Round 1.

Smythe-Davis will compete alongside Commonwealth Games silver medallist Acelya Toprak (Darren Hawney & Fitzroy Davies; Metro Judo Club & Relentless Judo) in the -57kg category. Toprak, who finished 5th at last years Abu Dhabi Grand Slam, has been drawn against 8th seed Vera Zemanova (CZE) in the opening round.

Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Amy Platten (Redbridge JC; Guy Platten) makes her second Abu Dhabi appearance. The -48kg fighter will face Alexandra Pop (ROU) in the opening round.

Michael Fryer (Rush Judo; Laurie Rush) makes his second Grand Slam appearance. Competing in the -66kg category, Fryer will face Lennart Slamberger (GER).


Lucy Renshall (SKK JC; Pete Blood) heads to Abu Dhabi as defending champion. Renshall won her first Grand Slam medal in Abu Dhabi when she claimed silver back in 2017. Renshall enters as the number one seed and has an opening round bye before facing either Juyeon Lee (KOR) or Anastasiia Antipina (UKR).

Kelly Petersen-Pollard (Hardy Spicer 83; Fitzroy Davies) claimed bronze at the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Slam. Entering as the number one seed, Petersen-Pollard will face either Shokhista Nazarova (UZB) or Luisa Bonilla (COL) after an opening-round bye.

Competing alongside Petersen-Pollard is Jemima Yeats-Brown (Ryecroft; Ian Oliver) won her first Grand Slam medal in Abu Dhabi, when she made her debut in 2016. Seeded 7th, Yeats-Brown has been drawn against Yingying Feng (CHN).

Lachlan Moorhead (Sheffield JC; Matt Moorhead) won bronze at last years Abu Dhabi Grand Slam; a result that saw him rise to the top 50 in the world rankings. Moorhead will face Mohab Elnahas (CAN) in the opening round.

Commonwealth Games champion Daniel Powell competes in the -73kg category alongside Eric Ham (Glossop; Geoff Ham). Powell will face Junlong Gou (CHN) in round 2 following an opening round bye. Meanwhile, Ham will face Ido Levin (ISR) in the opening round.


2021 champion Emma Reid (Redbridge JC; Steve Sandy) returns to defend her title alongside 2017 champion Natalie Powell (Irfon JC; Mark Earl).

2021 bronze medallist, Powell enters as 2nd seed, whilst Reid is seeded 4th. Both fighters have opening-round byes. Powell will face either Sophie Berger (BEL) or Alanoud Alsanea (KSA) whilst Reid will face either Nazerke Tileukhanova (KAZ) or Loriana Kuka (KOS) in round two.

-90kg Commonwealth Games champion Jamal Petgrave (Westcroft; Andy Ede) competes at his 13thGrand Slam and will face Anri Egutudze (POR) in the opening round.

In the -100kg Rhys Thompson (Enfield JC; George Hyslop) competes at his 4th Grand Slam. Thompson has an opening-round bye and will face Dzhafar Kostoev (UAE) in Round 2.

GB Judo will also be represented on the mat by a referee for the first time on the IJF World Tour since 2012 by Lisa Rivers.

Preliminary Round action starts at 07:00am (BST) on Friday whilst action on Saturday and Sunday will start at 8:00am.

Final Block is scheduled to commence at 14:00 on each day.

You can watch all the action from the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam LIVE at each day.