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World silver medalist Midori Shintani, who seriously injured her right knee at the Asian Games in South Korea last fall, is expected to resume training from April, All Japan Judo Federation women’s coach Kazuo Yoshimura said Monday.

“She is afraid to bend her knee right now, so I need to talk things over with her,” Yoshimura said. “In order for her to make it for the World Championships in September, I’d like her to start training in April.”

Shintani underwent reconstructive surgery on damaged ligaments in November after sustaining the injury in the semifinals of the women’s over 78-kg class in Pusan.

She has been rehabilitating the knee with the use of an exercise bike and spending time in the pool trying to regain fitness.

Yoshimura said that due to a lack of top-class contenders in the heavier weight classes, Shintani will be indispensable for the World Championships to be held at Osakajo Hall on Sept. 11-14.

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