French judoka snares gold medal in World Championships

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France’s Loic Pietri (white) competes with Georgia’s Avtandili Tchrikishvili during the 81kg category final of the International Judo Federation World Judo Championship in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. AFP PHOTO

RIO DE JANEIRO, Rio de Janeiro: Loïc Pietri of France won his country’s first gold medal at the World Judo Championships with victory in the men’s -81 kg title in Rio de Janeiro.

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Pietri beat Georgia’s Avtandali Tchrikishvili in the final.

Another French judoka, Alain Schmitt, collected bronze along with Russia’s Ivan Vorobev.

Pietri, a 23-year-old from Nice, was in solid form throughout the competition and won his first title, bettering his previous achievement of a bronze in the European championships two years ago.

It was a good day all round for France as they took their haul to four medals, and five in all, when Clarisse Agbegnenou won the -63kg silver medal after losing to Israel’s Yarden Gerbi in the final.

Agbegnenou’s compatriot Gevrise Emane, the reigning champion, had to settle for bronze, along with Anicka van Emden of the Netherlands.

At 20, Agbegnenou had been in confident mood all day and brought 31-year-old Emane’s reign to an end with victory in the semi-final.

But she was unable to defy the power of world number one Gerbi in the final and had to settle for second best.

AFP

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