Seventh-place for Sally Conway on day two of European Championships

Olympic Test Event bronze medallist Sally Conway produced Britain’s best result on day two of the European Championships as she finished in seventh-place.

In the -63kg category 16-year-old sensation Katie-Jemima Yeats-Brown, the reigning Cadets European Champion, gave up 16 years to her Spanish opponent Yahaira Aguirre De Juan and fell out of the competition by ippon with 28 seconds left of the contest.

In the same category Faith Pitman lost out in the first round to Finland’s Johanna Ylinen by ippon. 

In the -70kg field Sally Conway started her campaign with a win over young Russian ace Olga Pochkina by yuko.

The experienced and decorated figure of Spain’s three-time European silver medallist Cecilia Blanco was Conway’s next challenger and the teak-tough Briton dispatched her in-form foe by ippon.

In the pool final the world-class opposition continued as Tokyo Grand Slam bronze medallist Katarzyna Klys, the 2007 European silver medallist, lined up against the British Olympic Test Event silver medallist.

The highly-active, hard-working Scottish judoka registered a yuko score and, despite tenaciously pressing for further scores, fell behind to a waza-ari which ultimately decided the contest and saw her enter the repechage.

Conway was matched against Abu Dhabi Grand Prix bronze medallist Linda Bolder from the Netherlands and set the early pace in the contest with a string of attacks which threatened to break the deadlock.

Conway’s positive judo was rewarded with a yuko but with a minute left Bolder caught the Briton for a waza-ari and guarded her advantage to take the win which saw the British Champion finish a respectable seventh.

Sally Conway said: “I’m happy with my performance today but very disappointed to not come away with a medal. I felt, fit, strong and focused and I now I’ll go back to working on a few things in training so I can come back better next time.”

In the same category Gemma Gibbons received a bye in the opening round and met long-time -70kg standout Edith Bosch of the Netherlands, a three-time European champion, former world champion and two-time Olympic medallist.

Bosch showed her class in a faultless display as she earned victory by ippon as the half-way mark approached.

In the -73kg category Danny Williams had a bye in the first round and stepped onto the tatami for the first time against Frenchman Gilles Bonhomme. A solitary waza-ari score sealed Bonhomme’s progress and ended William’s campaign.

In the -81kg category three-time European bronze medallist Euan Burton was caught by German Alexander Wieczerzak by a yuko which was enough to conclude British interest in the category.

On Saturday – the final day of the individual competition before the teams take to the tatami on Sunday – sees six British judoka compete as Karina Bryant, Sarah Adlington, Winston Gordon, Matthew Purssey, James Austin and Chris Sherrington all battle in Chelyabinsk.

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