At the “Tassos Papadopoulos Eleftheria” Sports Center, on Saturday October 14, the Pan-Cypriot Judo Championship U21 took place. The games had a wide participation, with 5 categories for women and 7 for men.
Among the top athletes who distinguished themselves, were the brothers Adamantia and Petros Christodoulidis who won the first places in 52 kg and 60 kilograms respectively. The Kalaitsidis siblings had an equally successful performance, with George at 66 kg and Veronika at 57 kg.
The results of these athletes demonstrate their quality and high technical level. Special mention to Petros Christodoulidis who defeated all his opponents by Ippon, proving his skill. The participation of Christodoulidis, who has an international presence and is claiming qualification for the Olympic Games, was particularly noteworthy. Despite his success at international level, Petros did not hesitate to take part in junior competitions, representing his club with dignity.
As part of the judo championships, the performances of the sportsmen and women aroused the interest and impressed the audience that was present and watched them.
In the men at 60 kg, Petros Christodoulidis managed to stand out, showing his value and technique. At 66 kg, Giorgos Kalaitsidis and Iakovos Karaoulis offered an impressive fight with Giorgos Kalaitsidis winning, deserving of applause. At 73 kg, Christos Dimitriadis stood out. At 81 kg, Petros Kesov reached the final, where he faced and prevailed against the promising Thanasis Orfanou. At 90 kg, Theoharis Karatsousidis, through a long fight in the final, climbed to the winner's podium. At 100 kg, Andreas Savvas, after his victory in the K18, returned strongly to the K21 where he prevailed. Meanwhile, in the 100+ kg category, Andreas Giapanis from Larnaca stood out and took first place.
In the women's category, at 48 kg, Christina Christoforou faced Xanthia Stylianou in a difficult match, which ultimately ended in favor of Christina. At 52 kg, Adamantia Christodoulidis, with her excellent performances and tremendous determination, won first place. Veronika Kalaitsidou prevailed at 57 kg over the very dynamic Maria Leontsini, while at 70 kg Maria Michael was the one who won the top after her recent success in the world youth championship K18 in zagep. Finally, at 78 kg, Dominiki Papalouka tried to cope with the pressure of Irini Andreou, but she failed to prevail. Irini was also the winner two weeks ago in the K18 championship.
The conclusions from the championship are positive. Our young champions seem to have raised their level and the future of judo in Cyprus belongs to them.
On the tatami of the “Tassos Papadopoulos Eleftheria” Sports Center, it was not only the athletes who stole the show. The clubs watching from behind the scenes played an equally important role in the event.
The Christodoulidis Judo Academy won first place with 5 gold medals, 5 silver and 1 bronze, a result of the hard work and training it has invested in its athletes. Immediately after, the Skourumuni Judo Academy managed to win the second place on the podium with 3 gold and two silver medals, while the Kitio Judo Academy completed the winners' podium with 2 gold, one silver and three bronze medals.
Such competitions increase interest in the sport and bring new talent to the fore.
The Judo Federation would like to thank the clubs, coaches and referees for their excellent work. A special mention must be made of the athletes, who with their behavior and dedication highlighted the spirit of Judo.
Christos Christodoulidis, technical advisor of the Judo Federation, also provided an analysis that placed special emphasis on the role of referees as an extremely important element for the promotion of sports justice and the smooth conduct of matches. According to the technical advisor, “referees make serious efforts to perform their role in a fair and objective manner, however, the inevitable human tendency to error should not be an occasion to undermine faith in the system and the competitions”.< /p>
He also pointed out the need for closer cooperation between the clubs and the Federation, not only to find and train new referees, but also to create an environment where sports will be promoted with sound foundations and sound principles.
“We need to turn in the direction of education and cultivating a spirit of respect and mutual understanding between all parties involved: athletes, coaches, parents and of course, referees,” said Mr. Christodoulidis. “Respect for referees, their work and their decisions is central to promoting a healthy and positive sportsmanship.”
Christodoulidis also highlighted the role of club management and coaches in shaping the attitude and behavior of athletes and parents towards refereeing. “The distinguished and balanced attitude, both at the level of the club and the coach, can play a decisive role in shaping an environment where competitiveness will not prevail over the principles of sportsmanship and sportsmanship,” he concluded by saying. As his speech drew to a close, Christodoulidis called on all involved to take their own responsibility for promoting the sport.
The clubs that stood out during the Pancypriot U21 Championship
Champion Petros Christodoulidis in the U21 finals
The first winners of all categories of the Pancypriot U21 Championship 2023