As most of you will be aware I am a judo player and represent Great Britain. I also have type 2 Ushers!
Last weekend (21-22 Feb) I attended the IBSA World Judo Championships in Eger, Hungary, along with 5 team mates.
The competition is a qualifying event for Rio so tensions were high! In my first round I drew the current Paralympic champion Masaki Kento – Japan (who makes me look tiny!). Unfortunately I was unable to conquer him and he threw me in a rather powerful throw. As I lost the first round I dropped into the repercharge which means I then had to win my next 2 fights to win a bronze medal.
I dominated my next fight against Baurxhan Begaidarov from Kazakstan , defeating him in 40 seconds which meant I moved onto the next round to face the semi-finalist Aleksander Parasiuk from Russia. Aleksander is already sitting nicely on the qualification ladder so he did not come across as very happy when I defeated him by ippon in 20 seconds! At this point my coach got a little excited as this is my first really big International win and will catapult me from 11th in the World rankings, to probably top 6 which is a very comfortable place to be!
So all in all I was very pleased with this result. Out of the 4 medallists, the other 3 all competed in London 2012, so I am definitely up there!!
The following day I was entered into the Junior World Championships (I am 18). GB have a strong history in this event so I was determined to carry this on. Unfortunately for me 3 of my opponents refused to fight me! (Chuckle) so I obtained automatic wins from them and defeated Abderrahim Mehdaoui from France to take the Gold and the World Championship title. Top Junior in the World – think I can handle that!
Having the National Anthem played for me was quite emotive! Let’s hope I hear it again soon!
Following the 2 competitions we had a 3 day training camp so I got to spend a lot of time throwing people about – I made sure I got a few throws in on the big Japanese fella that beat me! Can’t let him think I’m a wimp!! J
I’m onto Brazil next in 2 weeks’ time followed by Germany in April and Seoul, Korea in May! Busy boy!
Please follow me on twitter – jackhodgsonjudo as I strive to qualify for the Paralympics next year!