Israeli judoka Yarden Gerbi suffered yet another defeat to rival Alice Schlesinger on Saturday, this time after just 54 seconds in the semifinals of the under-63 kilogram competition at the Grand Slam event in Baku, Azerbaijan.
The Israeli delegation got the Grand Slam off to an excellent start on Friday when Gili Cohen won a gold medal in the women’s under- 52kg event, but Gerbi couldn’t add to the blue-and-white’s medal tally on Saturday.Schlesinger, who began representing Great Britain at the end of 2014 following an ugly dispute with the Israel Judo Association, clinched the win over Gerbi with an Ippon after less than a minute, before taking the gold with a victory over Marijana Miskovic Hasanbegovic of Croatia with judo’s equivalent of a knockout after a mere 27 seconds.
Gerbi failed to join Schlesinger on the podium after losing to Cuba’s Maricet Espinosa in the battle for the bronze.
Cohen took a significant step towards securing her place at the Rio Olympics after beating Odette Giuffrida of Italy in the final on Friday. Cohen entered the event ranked at No. 14 in the world in her weight category, with the top 14 to qualify for Rio.
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