Canada wins three medals in Baku

Tuesday October 12th, 2010

Montreal, October 10, 2010 – The three Canadians in action at the judo women’s World Cup in Baku, Azerbaijan earned medals on Sunday.  Kelita Zupancic in 70 kilos, Amy Cotton and Marylise Lévesque, both in 78 kilos, earned gold, silver and bronze respectively.

‘’It’s hard to ask for a better day,’’ said Canadian coach Marie-Hélène Chisholm.  ‘’Kelita was perfect and Amy and Marylise lost close medal matches.’’

For Zupancic, of Ontario, it is her first career World Cup victory.  She defeated in order Olga Erokhina of Russia by Ippon, Tetyana Savenko of Ukraine by Yuko and Anastasia Gubadova of Russia by Ippon.

‘’I feel really good right now,’’ said Zupancic. ‘’I had good training camps lately and I gained confidence.  I am confident for Rotterdam.’’

The Canadian judokas compete next week in Rotterdam at a Grand Prix which is worth more international points than a World Cup.

There was nearly an all-Canadian final in 78 kilos, but Anastasiya Matrosova of Ukraine denied Lévesque a berth by defeating her in semifinal in overtime when a penalty was assessed to the Canadian.

‘’I was about to attack and the officials assessed me a penalty for non-combativity,’’ she said. ‘’That was rather special.  It’s the second weekend in a row that there are funny decisions against me.  Still I’m leaving here happy knowing I had a good competition.’’

Lévesque, of Quebec, defeated Zhu Feng of China in her opening bout by Ippon and beat Tatiana Sordiya of Russia by Ippon for the bronze.

Cotton, of Quebec, won her opening two bouts by Ippon over Cheng Cheng of China and Victoria Turks of Ukraine before meeting Matrosova in the final. No points were scored in that bout but Cotton was assessed two penalties to
one for the Ukrainian. 

‘’I am happy with my day,’’ said Cotton. ‘’But I’m disappointed with the final.  ‘’I heard some officials say I didn’t deserve the penalty but they gave it to me any way.  Still I’m leaving here with a lot of confidence for Rotterdam.’’

In Minsk, Belarus, Antoine Valois-Fortier of Quebec lost his opening bout in 81 kilos to Yoel Razvozov of Israel by Ippon and wasn’t ranked.  Razvozov enjoyed a perfect day and won the gold.

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