Britain’s Junior judokas enjoyed a strong weekend at the Junior European Cup in Deva, Romania as they came away with seven medals in total in their last competition before the Junior European Championships in Austria next month.
First day of the competition on Saturday 22nd August saw Kelly Staddon (-48kg) and Connor Ireland (-73kg) walk away with gold after impressive performances while Eric Ham (-73kg) took a well-deserved bronze and Bekky Livesey (-57kg) backed up her bronze at the Berlin Junior European Cup with a silver.
Sunday 23rd August saw a British 1-2 in the -63kg category as Lucy Renshall and Lubjana Piovesana yet again faced off in the final and once again it Renshall who came out on top following on from her victory in the Berlin Junior European Cup.
Stuart McWatt continued his strong first year at Junior level as he took silver in the -81kg category.
There were also fifth place finishes for Jodie Caller (-57kg) and Chelsie Giles (-52kg)
For Lucy Renshall it was an important competition as it gave her an opportunity to mix and match ahead of Europeans: “It was still important to medal but it was more focused on practicing new stuff and trying it out because if it didn’t work here then you know not to try it at Europeans and stuff like that so I was still happy to win but it was more focusing on how I fought and pulling new things off.”
Matt Purssey, British Judo Performance Coach, was pleased with how the team had performed with one eye on the Europeans next months: “We’re very happy with the performances this weekend, the guys were using this event to prepare for the European Championships so the focus wasn’t on the outcome but on working on their Trademarks and developing those in preparation for Austria and they all did that very well. They’re progressing and also the results came off the back of it so couldn’t be happier.”
“Very pleased for Kelly Staddon she’s working hard and she won all three matches quickly in Ne Waza with Ippon finishes and that’s something that she’s been developing. Eric Ham moving up to -73kgs performed very well, won his second European Cup medal and then the two girls at -63kg were in the final again were head and shoulders above everybody else.”
The team will next be in action at the Junior European Championships in Austria from 18-20 September.
Get your tickets to the Glasgow European Open on Saturday 10 October and see GB judoka in action on home soil: https://www.britishjudo.org.uk/glasgow2015