Powell claims gold on final day of Zagreb Grand Prix

Natalie Powell added Zagreb Grand Prix gold to the bronze medal she recently won at the Tbilisi Grand Slam.

Entering the -78kg category seeded 6th. Powell had an opening-round bye before victories against Linda Politi (ITA) and Beata Pacut-Kloczko (POL) progressed her to the Semi-Finals.

Powell booked her place in the final in style, defeating 3x Olympic bronze medallist and double World Champion Mayra Aguiar (BRA) by ippon score.

Top seed and world number 3 Inbar Lanir (ISR) awaited Powell in the Final. As the clock ticked past the 90-second mark, Powell went to ground applying a strangle, which subsequently forced her opponent to tap out, handing Powell her 4th career Grand Slam gold medal.

A number of upcoming Commonwealth Games representatives competed at the Winterthur European Cup this weekend.

On the opening day, Kimberley Renicks won gold in the -52kg category. Renicks won her Pool following victory against Launa Hinton (CAN) before a Semi-Final victory against Lucia Munoz-Solano (ESP) booked her place in the Final.

In the Final, Renicks faced Patricia Martin-Gallardo (ESP). As the contest entered Golden Score Martain-Gallardo was awarded a 3rd penalty shido, handing victory, and the gold medal, to Renicks.

Day two saw Sarah Adlington win gold in the +78kg category. With only 4 women entered, the competition ran as a round-robin with Adlington winning all three of her contests.

Rachel Tytler (-78kg) defeated Marlene Hunger (AUT) and Moira De Villiers (NZL) to book her place in the Final. Defeat to Lea Schmid (GER) saw Tytler claim the silver medal.

Malin Wilson (-57kg) and Neil MacDonald (-60kg) both won bronze on the opening day. Wilson defeated Annina Sutter (SUI) and Charisma Taylor (AUS) to win her Pool. Defeat in the Semi-Final to eventual gold medallist Laila Goebel (GER) progressed Wilson to the Bronze medal contest where she defeated Anne Kempf (GER).

In the -60kg category, victories against Joel Demaere (CAN) and David Gauch (SUI) progressed MacDonald to the Semi-Finals. Defeat to Maximilian Heyder (GER) meant MacDonald fought for bronze against Loan Celikbilek (SUI). A waza-ari score was enough to see MacDonald claim the bronze medal.

Scott Cusack won his opening round contest against Lukas Wittwer (SUI) before suffering defeat to Jarne Duyck (BEL). There was a reprieve for Cusack by way of the Repechage and victories against Uros Nikolic (AUS), Radomir Musil (CZE), Sebastien Isarno (FRA) and Michael Kistler (SUI) saw him claim bronze.

There was a 5th place finish for Chris Sherrington (+100kg), whilst Cailin Calder (-100kg) and David Ferguson (-60kg) finished 7th.

At the Paks European Junior Cup Simone Cross (-70kg) and Chloe Baker (+78kg) both finished 5th.

Cross had an opening round bye before victories against Mari Silva (BRA) and Sarah Mehlau (GER) saw her win her Pool and progress to the Semi-Finals. Defeat to Fidan Ogel (TUR) progressed Cross to the bronze medal contest where she was defeated by Tanja Gruenewald (GER).

Baker had an opening round bye before a Quarter-Final defeat to Nicki Norcic (SLO). A Repechage victory against Veronika Odor (HUN) progressed Baker to the bronze medal contest where she was defeated by Oxana Diacenco (MDA).

Back in Zagreb across the final two days of competition, Jemima Yeats-Brown (-70kg) defeated 2021 European U23 Champion, Martina Esposito (ITA) in the opening round. A great change of direction by Yeats-Brown saw her register a waza-ari score before transitioning into newaza to pin her opponent for ippon score.

In Round 2, Yeats-Brown faced Elvismar Rodriguez (VEN). As the Contest entered Golden Score, Yeats-Brown was awarded a second shido, before picking up a contest ending third, as the contest neared the 5-minute 30-second mark.

Competing in his first Grand Prix event, Lachlan Moorhead (-81kg) took less than 60-seconds to progress through his opening-round contest against Mohamed Rebahi (QAT). Moorhead countered a Rebahi attack for ippon score.

In Round 2 Moorhead was defeated by 8th seed Alpha Oumar Djalo (FRA). Djalo registered a waza-ari score early in the contest before throwing Moorhead for ippon score.

In the -73kg category, Dan Powell picked up a decisive third shido in his opening round contest against 2020 European Championship bronze medallist, Kilian La Blouch (FRA) whilst Eric Ham was defeated in his Round 2 contest against Martin Hojak (SLO), following an opening round bye.

Competing in the -90kg category Jamal Petgrave defeated Milan Randl (SVK) in the opening round. Petgrave went a waza-ari score down at the midway point but in the closing seconds of the contest pinned his opponent for ippon score.

In Round 2 Petgrave endured a 9minute contest against Narsej Lackovic (SLO) but unfortunately missed out on a place in the next round after conceding a waza-ari score.

In the -100kg category, Harry Lovell-Hewitt was defeated by current European Championship silver medallist Piotr Kuczera (POL)in the opening round.

In the +100kg category Andrew McWatt was defeated by Yves Ndao (BEL) in Round 1, whilst Wesley Greenidge suffered a Round 2 defeat to Marius Fizel (SVK), following an opening round bye.

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