2nd Jul, 2022

JUDO - Coventry's Chelsie Giles wins gold at the European Championships

Aaron Sutcliffe 29th Apr, 2022 Updated: 3rd May, 2022

COVENTRY’s Chelsie Giles has become European Champion after winning gold in the -52kg category on the opening day of the European Championships in Sofia.

It marks Giles’ first major title and adds the European crown to her Olympic bronze medal in Tokyo.

Giles received an opening round bye before overcoming a tricky opening round contest against Aleksandra Kaleta of Poland in Golden Score with a trademark newaza.

Picture courtesy of the EJU. s

And Giles then saw off two-time Olympic medallist Odette Giuffrida from Italy as she countered a Giuffrida attack, turning her for a waza-ari score.

The Coventry judoka then took just 90 seconds to win her semi-final against Mascha Ballhaus of Germany as she displayed some excellent newaza to progress to the final

And Giles met world number one Amandine Buchard from France in the final, having lost all three of her previous meetings with the French judoka.

The final went to Golden Score after the mandatory four minutes before a pair of shidos put Giles onto the backfoot only for Giles to defend an onslaught well before evening up the scorecard with two shidos of her own.

Giles said: “I cannot believe it. It’s so overwhelming, I think it will take a while to fully sink in.

“I have spent a lot of time studying those losses [to Buchard] to see what I did well and where I can improve.

“Jamie and I worked on a plan and I am so happy it paid off today.

“I am looking forward to having some time off now and enjoy the moment before the hard work

starts for the remainder of the season.”

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