Kenyan Judokas Win Regional Title in Zanzibar

The national men and women's judo teams have won the 13th edition of the East Africa Senior Judo Championships.

Kenya reclaimed the title for the first time in eight years when they won 10 medals; six gold, three silver and one bronze in the two-day championships that ended on Sunday at the Amani Stadium, Zanzibar.

Kenya edged out defending champions Burundi, who had dominated for five years to second place with seven medals; five gold, one silver and one bronze.

Tanzania settled for third with six medals; two gold, two silver and two bronze as Zanzibar, who claimed the most medals (11), came in fourth with one gold, four silver and six bronze.

Uganda finished with three medals; two silver and one bronze, while Rwanda got a bronze.

Somalia, South Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti failed to secure any medal.

Kenya's performance comes hot on the heels of another great show where it won its maiden continental team medal after finishing third during the Africa Senior Championships in December last year in Madagascar.

The men and women's teams won three gold medals each, but it's the women who emerged the best performers to get the most silvers (three) as the men got two bronze medals.

Perister Bosire led the women's charge when she outclassed Rachel Babiriye from Uganda to win the over 78kgs contest as Caroline Odongo captured the under 78kgs title without sweat with no opponents in place.

Then Dianah Kana beat Uganda's Piona Happy to lift the under 70kgs title.

Kalvin Munangwe made short work of Sheikh Kanoma from Tanzania and home player Idd Athman to win the men's over 100kgs title in an event that had three competitors.

Then George KImani disposed of Meshack Sango from Zanzibar under 100kgs gold, a category where Godfrey Omondi also from Kenya settled for bronze after beating compatriot Robinson Samora.

Johnson Kirimi from Kenya stopped Tanzanian Jeremiah Makame for gold in under 90kgs.

Three Kenyan women made it to the final before losing to their Burundian opponents to settle for silver medals. Shakila Ramadhan lost to Ruth Ntayishimiye in the under 63kgs final as compatriot Decy Amolo went down to Nanda Kezakimana in under 52kgs decider.

Mumbi gave Kenya silver in women's under 48kgs, losing to Signoline Kanyamuneza.

"This is another great show coming in the wake of our continental exploits three months ago," said Kenya Judo Federation president Shadrack Maluki.

"It clearly shows that we have the potential to perform at the big stage."

Maluki said the regional victory is a strong indicator ahead of the several remaining Tokyo Olympic Games qualifying tournaments.

Among them is the Turkey international qualifier at the end of this month, the continental qualifier due May in Casablanca, Morocco.

Kenyan Medals

Gold:- Munangwe Kalvin (Over 100kgs), George KImani (Under 100kgs), Johnson Kirimi (unfder 90kgs), Perister Bosire (over 78kgs), Caroline Odongo (under 78kgs), Dianah Kana (under 70kgs.

Silver:- Shakila Ramadhan (under 63kgs0, Decy Amolo (under 52kgs), Monica Mumbi (under 48kgs).

Bronze:- Peterson Gatiru ( under 81kgs), , Godfrey Omondi (under 100kgs)

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