On day two of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam, Lucy Renshall defended the title she won in 2021 whilst Jemima Yeats-Brown won her second Grand Slam bronze medal.
Renshall (SKK JC; Pete Blood) returned to competition at the recent World Championships following an elbow injury that ruled her out of the Commonwealth Games.
Following an opening-round bye, Renshall defeated Anastasiia Antipina (UKR). Renshall threw her opponent for a waza-ari score before transitioning into osaekomi to register a further waza-ari score to take the victory.
Renshall overcame a tough Quarter-Final contest against Hannah Martin (USA) to book her place in the Semi-Finals. Renshall found herself two shidos down during Golden Score and knowing a third would have seen her lose the contest, had to attack. Renshall went to ground and applied an arm lock, forcing her opponent to concede.
The Semi-Final contest between Renshall and Iva Oberan (CRO) was a closely contested affair. With nothing between the two judoka the contest entered Golden Score where Renshall registered a waza-ari score in the opening 10-seconds to book her place in the Final to face current World Championship bronze medallist Barbara Timo (POR).
There was nothing between the two judoka until Renshall unleashed her trademark hip throw with 15-seconds remaining to register an ippon score and secure her 5th career Grand Slam gold medal.
Speaking after the competition, Renshall said:
“I am so happy to get my 5th Grand Slam gold medal today but it’s really all down to the team behind me at British Judo. 14 weeks ago I had surgery and to get me back fighting at this level this quickly I am so grateful.”
Yeats-Brown (Ryecroft; Ian Oliver) progressed through her opening two rounds after her opponents Yingying Feng (CHN) and Laerke Olsen (DEN) were both awarded hansoku-make (disqualification) for head dives.
In the Quarter-Final Yeats-Brown found herself a score down heading into the final 60-seconds of the contest against Serafima Moscalu (ROU), but some great groundwork saw her pin her opponent for 20-seconds to progress to the Semi-Finals.
Yeats-Brown was awarded a third shido in her Semi-Final contest against eventual gold medallist, Elisavet Teltsidou (GRE), meaning she progressed to the bronze medal contest to face Maya Goshen (ISR).
It didn’t take Yeats-Brown long to secure the bronze medal, just 19-seconds in fact, as she threw Goshen in the second exchange for ippon score to claim her second bronze medal at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam – her first coming in 2016 when she made her Grand Slam debut.
Speaking after the competition, Yeats-Brown said:
“I am so happy to be back on the podium on the IJF tour, it has been a really difficult time for me but with the support of the coaches and wider British Judo team, I have stuck with it and buzzing to win a medal today. Jamie was a great support today and it was great to see my training partner take another gold after coming back from surgery.”
Kelly Petersen-Pollard (Hardy Spicer 83; Fitzroy Davies) defeated Shokhista Nazarova (UZB) in Round 2 following an opening-round bye. Nazarova was awarded a third penalty shido in Golden Score.
Petersen-Pollard lost her mammoth Quarter-Final contest to Martina Esposito (ITA) when the Italian fighter registered an ippon score in the 7th minute of Golden Score, meaning Petersen-Pollard progressed to the Repechage.
Petersen-Pollard picked up a third shido in her Repechage contest against Maya Goshen (ISR) meaning she had to settle for a 7th place finish.
Eric Ham (Glossop; Geoff Ham) defeated Ido Levin (ISR) in the opening round. Ham registered a waza-ari score before some great newaza forced his opponent to concede the contest. In Round 2 Ham was defeated by a single waza-ari score by Alexander-Bernd Gabler (GER).
Daniel Powell was defeated by Junlong Gou (CHN) in round 2 following an opening round bye. Powell missed an opportunity to register a waza-ari score via an osaekomi hold down after his opponent freed himself after 7-seconds before registering a throw for ippon score.
Lachlan Moorhead (Sheffield JC; Matt Moorhead) was defeated in his opening-round contest against Mohab Elnahas (CAN). Elnahas registered a waza-ari score before transitioning into the osaekomi hold down to pin Moorhead for ippon score.
Tomorrow sees 4 GB judoka in action:
-78kg: Emma Reid (Redbridge JC; Steve Sandy) and Natalie Powell (Irfon JC; Mark Earl).
-90kg: Jamal Petgrave (Westcroft; Andy Ede)
-100kg: Rhys Thompson (Enfield JC; George Hyslop)
Preliminary Round action starts at 08:00am (BST) on Saturday with Final Block scheduled to commence at 14:00.