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Tel-Aviv GP 2019 - Day 2 (We'll take one of each)

There was no less excitement on Day 2 of the Tel-Aviv GP. After a disappointing hardware-less day for the Israeli men's team on Thursday, they wanted so desperately to get off of the schneid, and the hometown fans would not be disappointed.

Israel took home 3 medals on Friday - Bronze in the men's -73, Silver in the Women's -63, and Gold in the Men's -81.

In the -73 category, Tohar Butbul took a tour of North America - beating the Candian Bouchard and the American Turner by Ippon - Bouchard with Osoto Gari 3 minutes in, and Turner on a Wazari from a Seoinage 23 seconds into Golden Score. He was cruising in the quarter finals, up by a Wazari with the seconds ticking away - but was thrown by Tajikistan's Khojazoda literally as time ran out - forcing him into the repechage. He ultimately won the Bronze by beating Nils Stump of Switzerland

In the -63 category, Inbal Shemesh, despite being the World #37, fought some good battles and came away with the Silver, ultimately losing to Maria Centracchio of Italy in Golden Score.

As for the -81 category, it seemed as if it was almost scripted. In the last match of the day,  hometown favorite Sagi Muki, dispatched Ivanov of Belarus with a beautiful Sode Tsurikomi Goshi at just over a minute into the match. Needless to say the crowd went wild - Sagi was ecstatic and jumped into Coach Oren Smadga's arms right after the final bows. As he walked to the podium, Neta's Eurovision-winning song - 'Toy' was blaring over the speakers. Below is a video of the throw




In non-Israeli news - while the USA and Canada didn't do so hot today, Italy seemingly found its way to the podium in every category - taking Bronze in -81 (Parlati), Silver in -73 (Giovanni Esposito) and -70 (Bellandi) and Gold in -63 (Centracchio). Add that to their Gold from Day 1, and Italy has 5 medals in the tournament so far - only one less than Israel's 6.

There was also a scary moment in the -63 quarterfinal where Emillie Sook of Denmark choked out Barbara Matic of Croatia for the win. The referee didn't see the choke, and as such Matic was out for a few seconds before the match was stopped. Thankfully, after a few moments with the medic, she was able to walk off the mat on her own power - in the video below, you can actually see her face turning blue ( not for the faint of heart)

 


That's all for today, as they say in Israel - Shabbat Shalom

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