Two Israeli judokas win gold medals at Grand Slam in Russia
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Two Israeli judokas win gold medals at Grand Slam in Russia

Gili Cohen defeats Spanish opponent in the women’s under-52 kilogram category; Sagi Muki beats Japanese rival in under-81 kilogram division

Israeli judoka Gili Cohen (R) poses for a photo with coach Shani Hershko after winning the gold medal at the Grand Slam competition in Ekaterinburg, Russia on March 15, 2019. (Israel Judo Association)
Israeli judoka Gili Cohen (R) poses for a photo with coach Shani Hershko after winning the gold medal at the Grand Slam competition in Ekaterinburg, Russia on March 15, 2019. (Israel Judo Association)

Two Israeli judokas took home gold medals at the Grand Slam Ekaterinburg event in Russia over the weekend.

On Friday, Gili Cohen defeated Spain’s Ana Perez Box for the top prize in the women’s under-52 kilogram category. The 27-year-old Israeli athlete won a silver medal at the Tel Aviv Grand Prix in January.

Commenting on Cohen’s victory, her coach Shani Hershko called her “a living example of determination, commitment and courage. This is a great honor for the women’s team, for the Israel Judo Association and the State of Israel.”

On Saturday, Sagi Muki won the gold in the men’s under-81 kilogram weight class. The 26-year-old defeated Japan’s Takanori Nagase, a former world champion and Olympic medalist, in the final seconds of the match.

In October Muki won the gold medal at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam, where Israel’s national anthem was played in a Gulf state for the first time.

Joining Cohen and Muki was Israeli Baruch Shmailov, who won the bronze medal in the men’s under-66 kilogram weight class. Shmailov defeated teammate Tal Flicker for the chance to participate in the event.

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