HIGASHIIZU, Shizuoka Pref. – Former world champion Seiko Yamamoto won the 63-kg title at the Japan Women’s Open on Sunday.
Victory in her first domestic meet since coming out of retirement all but booked Yamamoto a spot in the national championships in December.
Yamamoto, who was competing for the first time at 63 kg, dropped a period in the first of two matches but rebounded nicely with some strong offensive maneuvers.
Yamamoto, who has won four world titles, retired in July 2006 and married Hideaki Nagashima, a member of the Japanese national handball team. She gave birth to a baby boy the following year.
She was victorious in her comeback to international competition at 59 kg at the Poland Open in August. The 29-year-old is aiming to compete in the 2012 London Olympics.
Olympic champion Kaori Icho and reigning world champion Mio Nishimaki will also take part in the nationals.