(photo credit: Robert Vos/EPA)
Arik Ze'evi won the bronze medal in the under-100 kilogram category at the European Judo Championships in Belgrade on Sunday after defeating Georgian Levan Zhorzholiani.
Ze'evi, who has now won a total of six medals at European championships throughout his career, lost to Elco Van Der Geest in the quarterfinals of the competition, but three wins in the repechage gave the three-time Euro champion the bronze medal.
"This was physically the toughest competition I have ever taken part in," Ze'evi said. "It was a very difficult day and I'm happy to return to Israel with a medal."
Dutchman Van Der Geest lost to Ze'evi at the 2005 Euros in front of his home crowd.
Gal Yekutial won Israel's only other medal at the championships by defeating Nest Khergiani in the battle for the bronze in the under-60kg category on Friday.