SALVADOR, BRAZIL – Megumi Tachimoto scored a decisive victory over Qin Qian as Japan defeated China 3-2 to win the women’s title at the judo team world championships on Saturday.
Fielding a team weakened by the absence of London Olympians, Japan took a 2-0 lead thanks to wins by Yuki Hashimoto (52 kg) and Anzu Yamamoto (57 kg).
Kana Abe (63 kg) and Yuko Imai (70 kg) lost both their bouts but Tachimoto came through to score a waza-ari and seal victory in her over 70-kg match against Qin.
“I didn’t feel like it was all up to me. I was already full of determination to take the bout,” said Tachimoto. “I was able to be aggressive and this is a good start on the road to the (2016) Rio de Janeiro Olympics.”
Sixteen teams featuring five wrestlers at different weight categories battled it out in a knockout tournament format for the gold. Japan beat Britain, Brazil and Cuba en route to the final. The men’s event was to be held on Sunday.