In the Lázsló Papp Arena in Hungary, Day 6 of the World Judo Championships saw Jorge Fonseca on a mission to defend his world title.
The Portuguese powerhouse saves his best performances for this competition, with his only other World Judo tour gold coming when he won his first title in Tokyo two years ago. True to form he made it to the final in style.
His opponent was Serbia’s Aleksandar Kukolj who had the day of his life. The formerly under-90 kilogramme fighter had to make it to the final to qualify for the Olympic games, and incredibly he did just that, defeating World number one, Varlam Liparteliani of Georgia, along the way, before winning his semi-final to complete a fairytale story.
But the final would be a bridge too far. Fonseca was on fire, scoring waza-ari with one of his trademark dropping attacks.
Later, he threw for Ippon with Ko-uchi-gari to win his second world title. A great win for the flamboyant Fonseca, much to the joy of the Portuguese judo fans in attendance.
Mr Andrey Kryukov, General secretary of the National Olympic Committee of Kazakhstan, awarded him with his gold medal.
Later Fonseca said: “I was enjoying my medal, I was on a high but then I had a dip in form. The European Championships were awful, but I learned and was able to come and do what I wanted, which was take this title.”
Madeleine Malonga of France was also out to defend her World Champion’s red back patch and produced some great judo on her way to the gold medal match up.
There she would face Anna Maria Wagner of Germany who produced a symphony of exquisite judo worthy of her composer namesake, as she too progressed to the gold medal match up, defeating Japan’s Umeki Mami at the semi-final stage.
She would go on to dethrone Malonga in the final, throwing with uchi-mata in golden score to claim her first world title, a magical moment which she will remember forever.
She was awarded her gold medal by Mr Dániel Gyurta – an IOC Member, swimming Olympian and three-time World champion.
Throughout the event, Huawei has been donating watches to medal winners. Wagner was pleased to receive her new Huawei GT2Pro watch .
“It’s really cool,” she said. “And it’s the first time we get a present or I get a present, and this watch yeah it’s unbelievable, It’s really cool and I think I’ll wear it everyday at home
I track my training and I’ll use it of course, I’m really happy about this present”