Women judoka excel while the men fall in heavyweight divisions


Japan saw yet another disappointing campaign in the men’s two heaviest categories at the Grand Slam Tokyo meet Sunday but won all three women’s titles on offer.

Takamasa Anai, ranked first in the world in the 100-kg class, was eliminated in the semifinals by South Korea’s Hwang Hee Tae on the final day of the three-day meet at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium.

“I wanted to finish the year with a win,” Anai said. “It was really a rough year for me. I didn’t regain the national title. I failed to retain the world crown. I’ll try to bounce back next year and win a gold medal at the London Olympics.”

All four Japanese judoka weighing more than 100 kg lost before the semifinals.

Ryuta Ishii fell to Uzbekistan’s Abdullo Tangriev in the quarterfinals, while veteran Keiji Suzuki was knocked out in the second round after receiving a first-round bye.

Russia took both of the men’s heavyweight events, with Sergei Samoilovich winning at 100 kg and Alexander Mikhaylin prevailing at over 100 kg.

Japan was shut out of the medals in the men’s four heaviest classes at the world championships in Paris in August.

In women’s action, world bronze medalist Mika Sugimoto defeated top-ranked Megumi Tachimoto on points in an all-Japanese final at over 78 kg.

Akari Ogata won the 78 kg division and the 70 kg title went to Tomoe Ueno.