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Judoka Nomura scheduled to participate in World Cup

Kyodo News

Three-time champion Tadahiro Nomura, who announced in May he will continue his judo career, will compete at a World Cup meet in Baku next month, making his way back to the mat after an absence of nearly one and a half years.

Men’s judo coach Shinichi Shinohara revealed the news on Saturday, saying he hopes Nomura will make a successful comeback at the Oct. 10-11 meet in the 60-kg category.

“Since he is going to be competing I want him to produce a strong result,” Shinohara said.

It will be Nomura’s first official competition since he saw his dreams of a fourth Olympic gold medal shattered in April last year when he was beaten by Daisuke Asano in the National Weight Class Invitational.

“This will be significant in terms of filling the blank I’ve had and it will be a very important competition for me since there are things you can learn by competing in matches,” Nomura said in a statement released by the All-Japan Judo Federation.

Nomura, who underwent reconstructive surgery on ligaments and had part of a meniscus in his right knee removed in April 2008, is determined to compete in the 2012 London Olympics. He has been going through a rehab program and workouts at the Ajinomoto National Training Center in Tokyo’s Kita Ward.