Livesey’s fifth on Junior World Championship debut

Great Britain narrowly missed out on a bronze medal on day two of the 2013 Junior World Championships as Bekky Livesey beat off stiff competition along the way in the shape of a Junior World Champion and an IJF Grand Prix bronze medal holder in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Livesey, who recently turned 18, at first threw 2012 Junior European Champion Treicy Etiennar of France for ippon, pulling back from a waza-ari down in the dying seconds of the match.

The -57kg judoka then went on to throw IJF Almaty Grand Prix bronze medallist Sevara Nishanbayeva of Kazakhstan for ippon after dominating that match by a yuko and a waza-ari.

This set up a quarter-final against this year’s Junior European Silver medallist Daria Mezhetskaia of Russia, which she also won by ippon.

However, in the semi-final, Livesey was thrown twice for waza-ari culminating in ippon for the eventual gold medallist Arleta Podolak of Poland.

In the end Livesey had to settle for fifth place after narrowly being defeated Japan’s Christa Deguchi by a single yuko.

Nigel Donohue, the BJA’s Performance Director, said: “This was a fantastic performance by Bekky, who was totally unfazed at her first Junior World Championships.

“Bekky was given a tough draw and this is what championship competition is all about – stepping up to the mark and performing when it counts.”

“Her fifth place finish follows Nekoda Davis’s bronze medal at the recent Junior European Championships. These bode well for British Judo, with a real strength in depth at -57kg and we look forward to developing this crop of talent across the Junior programme over the coming years.”

Earlier in the competition Connor Ireland (-66kg) lost out to Nikola Gusic of Montenegro by ippon, while Jade Lewis (-52kg) exited early after Luz Olvera beat her for ippon having also led most of the match by waza-ari.

The day before saw 2011 Junior World bronze medallist Hayley Willis (-48kg) edge through the first round on shidos against Cristina Budescu of Moldova (2:1) but then narrowly lose out to Aigul Baikuleva of Kazakhstan who held her down for waza-ari in the dying seconds of the match.

Lucas Rowe (-60kg) also exited in the first round after he was thrown for ippon by Narek Karapetyan of Armenia, who had already led by yuko.

Day three will see the -63kg, -70kg women plus -81kg and -90kg men all in action.

Leading for GB’s women will be Katie Jemima Yeats-Brown (-63kg), a former European Cadet Champion and World Cadet bronze medallist who will compete alongside Jemima Duxberry, a Junior European Cup winner at the same weight.

It will also be a chance for Bekky’s sister Amy Livesey (-70kg) and Natasha Maslen, both Junior European Cup medallists to show their potential.

Meanwhile, Max Stewart will also be in action for the -81kg men and hoping to build upon his fifth place finish at the Junior European Championships.

Tune in to for live action and for the scoreboard. You can also follow on the BJA’s twitter and facebook channels from 9am, British Standard Time (BST) when the action begins. Final block from 4pm (BST).

Words by Donna Richardson.