The headline from most international sports competitions comes from the results. But the story of the IJF Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi (UAE) was the fact that Israel was allowed to compete under its own flag and be honored like all other countries at the victory ceremonies.
Israel and the UAE have no diplomatic relations and the Israelis were not allowed to wear their national uniforms last year. That led the International Judo Federation to cancel this year’s Grand Prix unless that was changed. And it was.
The Israelis made the most of the opportunity, leading the medal table with five total and two wins from Sagi Muki at 81 kg and Peter Paltchik at 100 kg. There were 343 judoka from 61 nations in the event, which was attended by Israeli Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev. Summaries:
IJF World Tour/Abu Dhabi Open
Abu Dhabi (UAE) ~ 27-29 October 2018
(Full results here)
-60 kg: 1. Amiran Papinashvili (GEO); 2. Francisco Garrigos (ESP); 3. Gusman Kyrgyzbayev (KAZ) and Sharafuddin Lutfillaev (UZB).
-66 kg: 1. Vazha Margvelashvili (GEO); 2. Yerlan Serikzhanov (KAZ); 3. Dzmitry Shershan (BLR) and Baruch Shmailov (ISR).
-73 kg: 1. Lasha Shavdatuashvili (GEO); 2. Akil Gjakova (KOS); 3. Tommy Macias (SWE) and Musa Mogushkov (RUS).
-81 kg: 1. Sagi Muki (ISR); 2. Matthias Casse (BEL); 3. Frank de Wit (NED) and Didar Khamza (KAZ).
-90 kg: 1. Mikhail Igolnikov (RUS); 2. Krisztian Toth (HUN); 3. Aleksandar Kukolj (SRB) and Mammadali Mehdiyev (AZE).
-100 kg: 1. Peter Paltchik (ISR); 2. Elmar Gasimov (AZE); 3. Karl-Richard Frey (GER) and Jevgenijs Borodavko (LAT).
+100 kg: 1. Inal Tasoev (RUS); 2. Lukas Krpalek (CZE); 3. Henk Grol (NED) and Iurii Krakovetskii (KGZ).
-48 kg: 1. Urantsetseg Munkbaht (MGL); 2. Distria Krasniqi (KOS); 3. Paula Pareto (ARG) and Yanan Li (CHN).
-52 kg: 1. Odette Giufridda (ITA); 2. Majlinda Kelmendi (KOS); 3. Chelsie Giles (GBR) and Gili Cohen (ISR).
-57 kg: 1. Nora Gjakova (KOS); 2. Anastasiia Konkina (POL); 3. Priscilla Gneto (FRA) and Timna Nelson Levy (ISR).
-63 kg: 1. Juul Franssen (NED); 2. Andreja Leski (SLO); 3. Tina Trstenjak (SLO) and Katharina Haecker (AUS).
-70 kg: 1. Marguax Pinot (FRA); 2. Miriam Butkereit (GER); 3. Giovanna Scoccimarro (GER) and Michaela Polleres (AUT).
-78 kg: 1. Guusje Steenhuis (NED); 2. Natalie Powell (GBR); 3. Zhenzhao Ma (CHN) and Beata Pacut (POL).
+78 kg: 1. Maryna Slutskaya (BLR); 2. Anne Fatoumata M Bairo (FRA); 3. Iryna Kindzerska (AZE) and Carolin Weiss (GER).