Skip to main content

Sometimes, even your best isn't good enough...

So as you can surmise from the title, I didn't get very far in today's tournament. I had two matches, both against brown belts who I felt were my equals in size and skill. I played really well in my first match. I opened the match by trying O-Uchi My first attempt didn't succeed, but it succeeded in planting a seed in my opponent's head to watch out for the O-Uchi. The next time I came in, he reacted to the O-Uchi, and I caught him with Uchimata. He pulled me a little off balance when I threw him, but I didn't hear a call from the ref, and was perplexed that I didn't get at least a Yuko. I found out after the match that I had a Wa-zari! In fact one of my teammates thought I was robbed of an Ippon, but truth be told, I am glad to hear the technique worked. But then I made my mistake. I came in for a third time and I got countered with Ko soto Gake.

 

Second Match, I tried my technique again. My opponent must have been paying close attention to my first match, because he was ready, He tried O-Soto, and I turned in to pick him up - I was thinking of trying Ushiro Goshi, but I turned into his trap, he launched a second effort into O-Soto Makikomi and took me to the mat. I thought I had lost it there, but he only got a wa-zari. Still, because he used a makikomi, he immediately had me in a pin, and 20 seconds later I was done.

Nonetheless I thought I played well. Mark, who I'd met several times at Oishi's Dojo, told me that sometimes you play your best and still go 0-2, and that feels better that winning without working for it. I definitely feel good about this tournament, and that I am improving. The good things I take away are that my favorite combination works well out of the Dojo, and that I can overcome my fears. The bad things of course, are that one combination doesn't make a champion, so I need to work on being less predictable and expanding my repertoire.

In addition to playing well, I learned and enjoyed a lot of other things about the tournament:

 

- I met up with Steve (who was reffing) and Mark from Oishi's dojo, both of whom are great guys, and who are fun to play against, and offered good pointers and advice. Mark also thought my combo was strong. Mark and his two sons competed and he and one of them took first. The other took third, but he was playing up in a division of kids 2 years older than him.

- I met several interesting Judoka, each with their own story. There was the guy who fought in 3 divisions - taking second in two and first in one (he played his own weight class, then 1 up and 2 up!), and he probably would've done better had he not busted his elbow. It's great to be 18 and full of energy. There was the blind guy who came out and played regular rules - I think he went one and one - just seeing him was inspiring enough, but then I was talking to his sister, who told a few of us that his sensei - another brother of theirs - had died a few months prior, the blind judoka had promised him he would keep practicing and competing. When he won his match, and when he got his medal, he got a huge ovation from the crowd. There were several father-son teams in the tournament - which is always encouragement that I might play alongside my kids one day. Finally, there was another person at the competition with a similar sounding name. I kept getting confused whenever they called him instead of me. Nice guy, roughly my age, and a dad with 5 kids. He one his first match handily, but then dislocated his shoulder in the second match and had to concede. Still 1 and 1 was good enough for second place. I asked him in the locker room if his shoulder hurt. His reply - 'Not as much as it will hurt when my wife finds out!'

- I warmed up with Mark, and he was using a Gill Sports Gi, Another wish list item! Ironically, I thought of buying one a couple of years ago when it was still $1.20 Canadian to every US dollar.

- I got to watch a lot of Judo - both adults and kids, and got to see some really good waza. Including a textbook Tomoe-Nage and an amazing standing Seoinage where the uke was practically doing a handstand on top of tori. There were no doubts that both of those throws were ippon, and I think everyone in the room had a sense of jealousy and awe when they pulled off those throws.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Tel-Aviv GP 2019 - Day 3 and Wrap-up

Day 3, the final day of the Tel-Aviv GP saw the home team end it on a high note. Rio Bronze Medalist Ori Sasson took gold in the -100 category, obviously winning the last medal in the last match on home soil has it's own emotional advantages, but he managed to win it in the weirdest of ways - With two of his opponents being disqualified sandwiching two resounding ippon throws. In his first match, which went a full 3 minutes into Golden Score, he outlasted Russia's Shakhbazov on penalties. In his next match, Ukraine's Kolesnyk only lasted 23 seconds, before Sasson threw him with a resounding Morote Seoinage (as a big guy myself, there's no greater satisfaction than the thud of your opponent on the mat that indicates a sure ippon). In the semi-final, the Azeri - Kokauri, managed to last a full two-minutes before being thrown by Sasson with Kouchi Gari for Ippon. Leaving only the other Ukrainian - Yakiv Khammo - between Ori and the final Gold for Israel. It would take nea…

2019 Paris GS Round Up and bits from Viszer's Q and A

The Paris Grand Slam was held last weekend, and as the first Grand Slam event of the year, it didn't disappoint (at least for the people who won medals), and as an added bonus, IJF President Marius Vizer hosted a twitter Q and A.

Because we're talking about Paris, and France, we need to start with the French Team - or should I say the French Women. According to an article on the IJF site, this is the First time since 1971 that a French male Judoka hasn't gotten a podium spot at the Paris GS. But you know who did get a Podium spot - Clarisse Abegnounou. The hometown star won her fifth Paris GS title in spectacularly dramatic fashion - by beating Tina Trestenjak of Slovenia 3 minutes deep into Golden Score, and throwing out her shoulder in the process (you can watch her moment of glory in the video below)

I also want to give a shout out to both Devin Waldenburg (-60) and Ebony Drysdale Daley (-70) who became the first Jamaicans to compete in an IJF World Tour event.

The Men&…

Judo and Stress

We all have stress in our daily lives - whether it comes from pressures at work, or at home; From our Spouses/Significant Others, from our parents, and from our kids. Stress can take a toll on your body and on your mind. Thankfully for me, Judo has been a great source of stress relief.

I was feeling a bit stressed out over the last few days, and then I went to Judo last night and it made it so much better - my stress was pretty much gone. Yes, I might wind up taking out some of my frustrations on various ukes, but at the same time, I know that they are doing the same with me - so it all balances out.

As for updates, I had a good practice last night. I was getting killed in Ne-Waza and I think I need to improve my skills there, but I had a good couple of rounds in Randori, and re-discovered that I can Actually throw people with O-Soto Gari!