It would be quite fitting for Schlesinger to end the drought and become the
first Israeli woman to win an Olympic medal since Yael Arad 20 years
The 24-year-old is a product of the Israeli judo boom which followed
the 1992 Barcelona Games and her time to peak has arrived after amassing medals
in major championships over recent years.
Schlesinger won her third
bronze medal at the European Championships in April, also finishing third in
2008 and 2009.
Her first major medal four years ago saw her qualify for
the Beijing Games, but she lost both her fights in China. She will at least know
what she’s up against after her Olympic experience in Beijing and she also has
the advantage of previously excelling on the world stage, becoming the fourth
Israeli to claim a medal at the judo World Championships in 2009, finishing in
third position in Rotterdam.
The former European Junior Champion joined
Arad (1991 – bronze, 1993 – silver), Oren Smadja (1995 – silver) and Arik Ze’evi
(2001 – silver) in the short list of Israelis to win medals at the
The aforementioned judokas also have something else in common –
all have won Olympic medals, apart from Schlesinger.
She’ll be looking to
change that in London.