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Japan announces team for Rio, Ono is in

Japan, the synonym for Judo, confirmed their team for Rio Olympics which everybody expected from day to day at the Fukuoka Convention Center.

 

Current Olympic Champion Kaori Matsumoto will be the most recognized name among Japan Olympic Team stars just like her teammate Masashi Ebinuma who finished on third place at the last Olympic Games in London. Even Ebinuma lost semi-final U66kg against Abe Hifumi, World titles and Olympic medal is his shield for going to Rio.

 

The fans for sure will be glad to see current World Champion, attractive Uchi-mata thrower, Shohei Ono who succeed to win his "U73 battle for Olympics" over Riki Nakaya. Ono, who won his first title two years ago, defeated London Olympic silver medal winner Riki Nakaya in the final on the last day of the tournament that serves as the final qualifier for this summer’s Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

ono_nakaya_japan_championships.jpg

 

The All Japan Judo Federation 12 classes invitational weight class championships in Fukuoka. Ami Kondo won Japanese judo’s most heated rivalry in the competition for a spot at the Rio Games, being chosen over Haruna Asami as the women’s 48-kilogram representative for the national team on Sunday.

 

Twenty-year-old Kondo, the 2014 world champion, won the 48-kilogram division at the weight class championships to grab her first Olympic berth, while 27-year-old Asami, who won the World Championships twice in 2010 and 2011, suffered a first-round exit.

 japan_olympic_team2016.jpg

“The 48-kilogram class is full of Japan’s history. I’ll go all-out to win gold” Kondo said after beating Hiromi Endo in extra time to win the women’s title at the All-Japan invitational weight class championships in Fukuoka.

 

It was deja vu for Asami, who had a similar experience four years ago when she was considered the favorite to represent Japan in the 48-kilogram class at the London Games. Asami, however, missed out on a berth to London after losing in the first round of the same invitational weight class championships.

 

“I did my best,” Asami said after the match, with tears welling in her eyes. “This is what I’m capable of.”

 

Team of Japan won only one gold in London 2012. In Rio they are expecting better, even heavyweight categories are still not decided.

 

WOMEN

 

-48kg - Ami Kondo

-52kg - Misato Nakamura

-57kg - Kaori Matsumoto

-63kg - Miku Tashiro

-70kg  - Haruka Tachimoto

-78kg  - Mami Umeki

 

MEN

 

-60kg  - Naohisa Takato

-66kg  - Masashi Ebinuma

-73kg  - Shohei Ono

-81kg  - Takanori Nagase

-90kg  - Mashu Baker

-100kg  - Ryunosuke Haga

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