Guusje Steenhuis lost Friday in the semi-final of the judo World Cup in Qatar against the French Audrey Tcheuméo. The thirty-year-old judoka lost in the class up to 78 kilograms with waza-ari, but can still win bronze in rematches. Michael Korrel was surprisingly knocked out in the second round in Doha. For Simeon Catharina and Natascha Ausma, round three was the final destination.
Steenhuis is the only Dutchman still in the running for the Medal of Honor. The 30-year-old judoka, who competes in the category up to 78 kilograms, won in the third round after half a minute with ippon against New Zealander Moira De Villiers. In the second round, Steenhuis also beat Mongol Khuslen Otgonbayar by ippon.
In the quarter-finals, the Brabançonne won convincingly against the German Alina Böhm, reigning European champion. After a quick waza-ari, she qualified for the semi-finals with an ippon.
In the semi-finals, Tcheuméo was penalized for passivity after one minute. The French surprised Steenhuis a minute later with waza-ari, after which the Dutchman received a penalty. Steenhuis finally had to recognize her superiority in the former world champion. Steenhuis still has a chance to win the bronze medal in the rematches. She faces the Chinese Ma Zhenzhao.
Korrel, 29, was bye-offed in the first round, after which he was stunned by Hungary’s Zsombor Veg in his first game of the day. Korrel won bronze at the 2019 and 2022 World Cups. In 2022, he won the European title in the weight category up to 100 kilograms in Budapest.
Catherina and Ausma also eliminated
Catharina, who plays in the same category as Korrel, was eliminated in the third round by Russian Arman Adamian. Hagenaar, 25, was a waza-ari behind but out of nowhere put the equalizer on the scoreboard. In addition, Catharina received two penalties for passivity, just like her opponent. In additional time, the so-called golden score, a third penalty was fatal to him.
For Natasha Ausma, who beat Georgika Wesly Djengue Moune of Cameroon with waza-ari in the second round, the third round was the final destination. In Doha, the 26-year-old Frisian lost to Italy’s Alice Bellandi, world number one, due to penalties.
The Dutch team’s results in Doha have been disappointing so far. On Thursday, Sanne van Dijke, former world champion Noël van ‘t End and Kim Polling also did not come close to the medal of honor. “I think a lot can be expected of us,” said judo sporting director Gijs Ronnes ahead of the World Cup. “At this World Cup, the target is three medals and six top-eight finishes.”
The World Cup counter in Doha is now at one o’clock. Talented Joanne Van Lieshout (-63 kilograms) surprisingly clinched bronze on her World Cup debut on Wednesday.
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