INCHEON, SOUTH KOREA – Japan took a back seat to rival South Korea Sunday, only winning two of the five gold medals on offer on the second day of judo competition at the 17th Asian Games.
Hiroyuki Akimoto defended his title in the men’s 73 kg, the tears flowed for Anzu Yamamoto, who captured the gold in the women’s 57 kg, but Chizuru Arai fell against world bronze medalist Kim Seong-yeon in the women’s 70-kg final at Dowon Gymnasium.
Kim Jae-bum, Joung Da-woon and Kim Seong-yeon made it a hat trick for the host nation at men’s 81 kg, and women’s 63 kg and 70 kg, respectively.
“Japan coach (Kosei) Inoue encouraged me that I better not lose here if I want to have shot at making the Rio Olympics,” said Akimoto. “I was determined to win no matter what. I didn’t fight very well but I produced this result. I am relieved I could get this result.”