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  • Doha welcomes the World of Judo for 2023 Championships


    On May 7th the excitement begins. After four months of thrilling judo on the IJF Grand Slam and Grand Prix tours, the world's best judokas converge in Qatar for a week of World Championship action. 667 athletes representing 99 nations from all five IJF continental regions will take part in the event staged at the Ali Bin Hamad al-Attiya (ABHA) Arena.


    France will look to flex their muscles on day one with the possibility of bringing home multiple medals in the lightest weight classes. Blandine Pont is in the mix for Women's -48kg gold and both Luke Mkheidze and Cedric Revol are contenders for podium places in Men's -60kg.


    Japan, as always, will be a force at the championships. Although they have not been as prominent along the World Tour so far, Japan still brings a star-studded roster to Qatar that includes Natsumi Tsunoda (W48), Uta Abe (W52), Haruka Funakubo (W57), Megumi Horikawa (W63), Saki Niizoe (W70), Shori Hamada (W78), Naohisa Takato (M60), Hifumi Abe (M66), and Sanshiro Murao (M90).


    Another team to keep an eye on is Canada. Christa Deguchi and Jessica Klimkait will once again battle in the Women's -57kg category while Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard will contest a very competitive -63kg field. On the men's side, names like Francois Gauthier Drapeau, Kyle Reyes, and Shady Elnahas could make a splash.


    Kazakhstan, Korea, Mongolia, and Uzbekistan have all had good results in the 2023 season and look to pick up some positive results over the week in Doha.


    European nations with large contingencies include Azerbaijan, Georgia, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands.


    Then there is the return of the Russian and Belarusian athletes. The 19 judokas entered under the title "Individual Neutral Athletes" span 11 weight categories. Neither Russia nor Belarus have won medals at a World Tour event in 2023.


    The fun begins on Monday and will continue all through the week. Are you ready for JuDoha?



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