Joan-Benjamin Gaba (-73kg) eliminated in the second round of the Worlds

At least Joan-Benjamin Gaba will not be able to regret not having tried everything against Soichi Hashimoto, in the second round of -73 kg, at the Worlds in Tashkent, this Saturday. Leaping even before the start of the fight, the young Frenchman (21 years old) entered the bacon of the Japanese, with the ardor of his youth. The Japanese do not really appreciate being pushed around like this. It gave a clash of cultures but, in the end, the 2017 world champion ended up winning on penalties, in the golden score.

The third, synonymous with hansoku-make, was a bit generous for one of the big names in the category (also world silver medalist in 2018 and bronze in 2021). But Gaba did not want to take refuge behind that to explain his defeat against a rival already taken during the mixed team event at the 2021 Worlds (defeat also).

“I’m going to go back to work”

Even if he was logically frustrated, Gaba will have had the merit, for his first Individual Senior Worlds, of giving himself fully. “It’s disappointing, I gave the best of myself. He’s still a big customer. Before stepping on the mat, I was sure I could beat him but I didn’t prove that I could do it. I’m going to go back to work.” confided with lucidity and honesty the young Frenchman. ” It’s not far. He’s really good in attitude, on the kumi-kata (guard), aggressiveness. But in attack, he has to break free. He creates opportunities but he needs to throw more,” estimated Yacine Douma, the French coach. Nevertheless, on the attitude, Joan-Benjamin Gaba was in the spirit wanted by the national staff: to dare to regret nothing.

After the elimination in the first round of Benjamin Axus, there are therefore no more French people in -73 kg this Saturday. The only chance of a medal therefore rests with Sarah-Leonie Cysique (-57 kg), Olympic vice-champion in Tokyo whose first fight has not yet taken place.

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