World Cadet Judo Championships – Almaty, Kazakhstan


Let’s make no mistake – this is NOT a small competition – it is the World Championship for Cadets and it is held every two years, this year in the city of Almaty in Kazakhstan with 464 athletes from 61 countries – 256 men and 208 women.

 Cyprus is represented by 7 athletes – 5 men and 2 women – Petros Christodoulides -50Kg, Kyprianos Andreou -60Kg, Georgios Balajiasvili -60Kg, Christos Georgiou -66Kg, Panagiotis Shakkos, -73Kg, Constantia Antoniou -70Kg and Janet Michailidou in the +70Kg category.

Petros Christodoulides -50Kg

 First up was Petro and his first contest was against the American champion Tegan Yuasa who at 17 was 3 years older than him and number 38 in the world ranking – 98 places higher than Petro!

 Petro was unlucky not to receive a score after only 12 seconds, but it was the American scored first in the first minute with a Seoi-Nage technique. The next minute saw both athletes competing for grips and trying to attack, but it was Petro who threw the American with Ippon Seoi Nage on the edge of the mat for a clear Ippon!

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNV1vtZhykg

Petros next came up against Alexandru Matei from Romania who got the Gold medal at the Berlin Cadet European Cup earlier this year – a highly ranked athlete with a lot of experience at both European and World level and who received a bye in the first round. 

The contest started with both athletes vying for grips and Petro attacking. The Romanian attacked with a failed attack and Petro attempted to stangle him in Ne-Waza without effect. Towards the end of the first minute, Matei turned in for a Kataguruma style technique catching Petro and throwing him for Ippon – the Romanian went on to get Fifth place.

This is Petros first World Championship and with his win climbed 20 places in the World Ranking ladder.

Contest video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6w2W4rZnFc

Kyprianos Andreou -60Kg

Kypriano received a bye in the first round and was then up against Zakariae Elmaallem from Marocco – a very experienced athlete who had gotten Gold at the Tunis Cadet African Cup, Silver at the Cassablanca Cadet African Cup and Bronze at the African Junior Championships – all this year. Both athletes were attacking and for the first 60 seconds, there was very little between them, but the Moroccan received a Shido for non-combativity at the end of the first 60 seconds. In the second minute both athletes attacked with both of them almost scoring, but it was Elmaallem who caught Kypriano half way through the third minute and threw him for Ippon.

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxuZrg9-WdQ

Georgios Balajishvili -60Kg

After a bye, the first contest for Georgios was against the Canadian Daniel McCristal who got Bronze at the Monteal Junior Panamerican cup and Bronze in the Montreal Cadet Panamerican Cup earlier this year. The contest started with a lot of vying for grips and the first minute had only two attacks from Georgio. The Canadian received a Shido penalty for non-combativity at the beginning of the second minute and thirty seconds later he attacked, but Georgio countered him and took him to the group – Ippon!

Contest video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NiZerP-d2-I

Next up for Georgio was B. Tralhao Fernandes from Portugal. Both athletes came out attacking with the majority going to Georio and the at the end of the first minute, Fenandes received a Shido for non-combativity.  Into the second minute and the attacks from Georgio continued without any from the Portuguese athlete who received a second Shido for non-combativity. The attacks from Georgio continued, following them with Ne-Waza as well.  With no real attacks from Fernandes he received a third and final Shido eliminating him and giving the win to Georgio.

Contest video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DBnCJrbJS0

Georgio’s third contest was up against the experienced Japanese athlete Keiji Tsujioka. Not daunted by his opponent, Georgio came out attack both in Tach-Waza and Ne-Waza where he nearly was able to hold the Japanese athlete. Whilst on the ground Tsujioka tried to turn Georgio, but put his fingers illegally in his trousers and received a Shido penalty for this. The contest continued with both athletes try to get a good grip on the other and just into the third minute Georgio went to throw the Japanese athlete taking him clear off the ground, but landing on his front – no score. The athletes went into Ne-Waza again and it was here where Tsujioka’s experience showed as he held Georgio down for Ippon. 

Tsujioka went on to win the Gold medal so losing against him was no disgrace

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqtjTsCAIpc

Georgio went into the Repechage and came up against Turan Bayramov from Azererbaijan who had gotten Gold in both the European Cadet Championship and Teplice Cadet European Championship earlier this year – another very experienced athlete. World rankings and potential medals were at stake here so both athletes started with attacks and at the end of the first minute Bayramov attacked throwing Georgio that went for a video review – no score was given and the contest continued, again with both athletes attacking. After receiving some medical treatment, Georgios came back to the mat and the contest continued but with Georgio receiving a Shido penalty for aggressively breaking the grip of his opponent.  The contest continued into the third minute with Georgio needing treatment again for the bloody nose.  Bayramov attempted another throw and took Georgio to Ne-Waza where he managed to strangle Georgio for Ippon.

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dAmutZCEtNE

End of the road for Georgio, but he obtained SEVENTH place in the World Championship – another excellent performance by him!

Christos Georgiou -66Kg

Christos received a bye in the first round and had the athlete Jahja Nurkovi from Montenegro who had taken Bronze at the Teplice Cadet European Cup earlier this year.

Nurkovi attacked early almost scoring and taking Christo to Ne-Waza where he almost held him. The contest continued with both athletes constantly attacking and almost throwing the other. Halfway through the second minute Christo attacked, but it was Nurkovi who countered and threw Christo for Ippon.

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRcNSib0blE

Panagiotis Shakkos -73Kg


Panagiotos also received a bye and then his first contest was against Filip Ivanka from the Czech Republic – who had won Gold at the Fuengirola Cadet European Championship this year.

As they went into Golden Score, Panayioti threw Ivanka for Ippon and proceeded to the next round.

Here, he came up against Ganijon Ganijev from Tajikistan who had taken Gold at the Asia-Oceania Cadet Championships earlier this year and a very experienced athlete. Ganijev scored a Waza-Ari then an Ippon beating Panagioti.

Contest video: No video available

Constantina Antoniou

Onto the ladies and first up was Constantina who had Shehata Afnan of Egypt, a Bronze medallist in the African Junior Championship this year. Both athletes were contesting for grips from the beginning and first attack went to Constantina and then into Ne-Waza.  She then received a Shido after 90 seconds and the attacks from Constantina continued well into the third minute when the Eqyptian finally received a Shido for non-combativity and soon after a second for grabbing the trousers. The contest continued with more attacks from Constantina who almost threw the Egyptian with 30 seconds to go. The time ended and the contest went into Golden Score where, against the run-of-play, the Egyptian attacked, her FIRST in the contest and threw Constantina for a score, ending the contest. With no attacks in the 4 minutes of contest time, surely this was an injustice against Constantina as the Egyptian should have received at least one penalty for non-combativity?

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLB9mMameWw and see for yourself the lack of attacks from the Egyptian athlete.

Janet Michaelidou

Last for Cyprus was Janet who after getting a bye in the first round fought local athlete Madina Paragulgova from Kazakhstan who this year got Gold at the Macau Cadet Asian Cup and Gold at the Hong Kong Cadet Asian Cup. Janet was giving away a lot of weight to the heavier, more advanced athlete.  Both athletes came out attacking and trying to get their grip on the other. Janet attacked and then for a second time, this time Paragulgova was waiting for her and countered her for Ippon.

Contest video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-PIpiNEJb8

Cyprus Judo Federation

The Cadet World Championship is the highest competition for Cadets all over the world and the standard of Judo was very high. The athletes from Cyprus showed us once again the progress they have made and the ever-increasing level, because it is only by competing at this level that the athletes from Cyprus will become better.

The Federation is very pleased with all the athletes and their performances at the championship – some of which came up against very experienced athletes that eventually won medals.

The Federation would also like to thank National Coach Lavrentis Alexanidis and Coach Marinos Piponas who accompanied our athletes to the event. 

Cyprus Judo Federation – We Have A Dream!

Junior European Judo Cup - Ponzan, Poland

Georgios (blue) in action

Georgios (blue) in action

Representing Cyprus at the Junior European Judo Cup in Poznan, Italy this weekend was our athlete in the -90 Kg category, Georgios Krussanotakis from the Kyrenia Judo Union. The competition had 113 male athletes from 19 countries.

First up for Georgio was Bartosz Mackowski from Poland. Georgio scored a Waza-Ari and then towards the end of the four minutes an Ippon and proceeded to the next stage.

Gere he met Moritz Moser from Austria who Georgio beat in just over a minute with an Ippon.

In his third contest, Georgios came up agains Eniel Caroly from France, an athlete who had already got Gold at the Paks Junior European Cup this year and a very experienced athlete. After 54 seconds, Georgio was thrown for Ippon, but as Caroly went on to the final, Georgio went to the Repechage.

His frist contest there was against Kacper Kubiak from Poland. Although Georgio received 2 Shido penalties, he went on to win by Ippon half way through the fourth minute.

Next up was Martn Bezdek from the Czech Republic. Georgio scored a Waza-Ari, but in the ned lost with Ippon.

Georgio’s efforts earned him 7th place and a very respectable result against some very experienced European athletes and one again did Cyprus proud - well done Georgio!

Cyprus judo Federation - We Have A Dream!

IJF World Judo Tour – Zagreb, Croatia


The IJF World Judo Tour in Zagreb was also held this week – a Judo tournament that where 558 competitors (332 men and 226 women) from 87 countries took part. It is another very tough competition and one where our athletes gain valuable experience competing against some of the best in the world

Two athletes represented Cyprus at these games – Sofia Asvesta in the -52 Kg women and Georgios Kroussaniotakis in the -90 Kg men.

Sofia Asvesta wearing the white Judogi

Sofia Asvesta wearing the white Judogi

On day 1 it was Sofia’s turn. She came up against Tinka Easton from Australia in her first contest. After initially battling for grips, Sofia scored a Waza-Ari after just 20 seconds.  The next minute saw both athletes attacking and Easton receiving a Shido penalty.  With almost 2 minutes to go the Australian athlete scored a Waza-Ari levelling the scores. Sofia continued her attacks but was caught for a second Waza-Ari by Easton, giving her the win. Unfortunately, Easton was beaten in her next contest so Sofia did not proceed to the Repechage.

Georgios Kroussaniotakis wearing the white Judogi

Georgios Kroussaniotakis wearing the white Judogi

Day 2 saw Georgios in action against the Algerian athlete Abderrahmane Benamadi. The first minute saw the Algerian in a failed attack with both athletes going to Ne-Waza where they attempted techniques without success until Georgios was turned by the Algerian and held for 20 seconds – Ippon to the Algerian.  Once again, the Algerian lost two contests down the line which meant that Georgios did not progress to the Repechage.

Our athletes were accompanied by National Coach, Theodoros Mandritis,

 Though we might not have had any medals at the tournament, both athletes performed well and learn more and more with every appearance. Such high-level tournament is the only place where our athletes will gain experience, not only by competing, but by watching the contests as well.

Cyprus Judo Federation – We have A Dream!

TeamCyprus Flag Bearer


Judo was given another singular honour by the Cyprus Olympic Committee when our athlete Giogios Balajiasvili was chosen to carry the flag of Team Cyprus at the opening ceremony of the 15th European Youth Olympic Festival that is being held in Baku Azerbaijan.

Giorgios recently got a Gold Medal at the Games of the Small States of Europe in Montenegro, a Silver Medal at the Commonwealth Youth Games in 2017 and was selected to represent Cyprus at the Youth Olympic Games in Rio last year.

All of these factors made the Cyprus Olympic Committee choose Giorgios to be the flag bearer for Team Cyprus.

Video showing the team entering the stadium HERE

Well done Giorgio!

Go TeamCyprus!!

Cyprus Judo Federation - We Have A Dream!


European Men/Women


Last week saw one of the most difficult competitions on the European calendar – the Men & Women European Championship held in Minsk, Belarus.

There were 49 nations taking part with a total of 390 competitors.

Representing Cyprus were Rudolf Kourtides and Aristos Michael and accompanying them was National Coach, Lavrentis Alexanides.

Rudolf was first up in the -73Kg category and came up against the Latvian Demitrijs Fedosejenkovs who threw Rudolf at the end of the second minute for Ippon.

Next up was Aristo against the Polish competitor Damian Szwarnowiecki in the -81Kg category. Aristo fought well, but was penalised with Hansoku-make giving the win to the Pole.

This was a very tough competition and our athletes were there for experience and both of them fought well.

The Federation is proud of our athletes and wish them well in the competitions to come.

Medals from The Games of the Small States of Europe

Our Judo Team that competed - (left to right) Georgios Kroussaniotakis, Georgios Balajiasvilli, Aristos Michael, Sofia Asvesta, Rudolf Kourtides and Nikola Evripidou - accompanies by (left to right) Costas Piponas (Physiotherapist), Nicos Patsiantos (Referee), Lavrentis Alexanidis (National and Team Coach) and Christos Christodoulides (Team Leader).

Our Judo Team that competed - (left to right) Georgios Kroussaniotakis, Georgios Balajiasvilli, Aristos Michael, Sofia Asvesta, Rudolf Kourtides and Nikola Evripidou - accompanies by (left to right) Costas Piponas (Physiotherapist), Nicos Patsiantos (Referee), Lavrentis Alexanidis (National and Team Coach) and Christos Christodoulides (Team Leader).

The Games of the Small States of Europe always sees Cyprus competing against other similar sized countries and is a good test for many of the athletes and their future careers.

Ladies first!

Sofia Asvesta in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Sofia Asvesta in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Sofia Asvesta was competing in the -52 Kg category. In her first contest she came up against Telma Martins from Luxembourg who she beat by Ippon in the last minute of the contest.  Her next contest was against Yamina-Sara Allag from Monaco who she beat 9 seconds into the second minute again with Ippon. In the final, Sofia fought Kim Eiden, again from Luxembourg.  It was a very close match with both competitors attacking and almost scoring until Sofia threw Eiden for Waza-ari and went on to hold on for GOLD.

Nikola Evripidou in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Nikola Evripidou in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

 Nikola Evripidou came up against some very still competition in her -63Kg category.  Her first contest was against Rania Drid from Monaco where she fought well, but lost in the end by Ippon. He second was against the athlete from Iceland, Asta Arnorsdottir who she lost to at the end of the first minute. Her third contest was against Lia Povendano Ruiz of Andora where Nikola scored first with a Waza-ari, but lost in the end in the last minute by Ippon. In her last contest, Nikola came up against the eventual silver medalist Florine Soula from Monaco who she lost to with Ippon.  Nikola didn’t get a medal this time, but fought very well, against very good competition and there is a bright future for her.

Now onto the men!

Giorgios Balajiasvili in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Giorgios Balajiasvili in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Giorgios Balajiasvili competed in the -60 Kg and produced an excellent performance.  First up was Dofri Bragason from Iceland who Giorgios beat with Ippon. Next up was Alexander Heiidarsson again from Iceland who Giorgios again beat by Ippon, this time within 46 seconds!  Finally, Giorgios had to compete with Yann Siccardi from Monaco who he beat with Ippon in the final minute for GOLD. The contests and three Ippons!

Rudolf Kourtides in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Rudolf Kourtides in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

In the -73 Kg Roudolf Kourtides beat Cedric Bessi from Monaco in his first contest with Ippon after Bessi had scored first with a Waza-ari. In his second contest, Rudolf lost to local hero Nikola Gardasevic from Montenegro by Ippon in the last minute.  In the fight for third place, Rudolf fought Mar Reig Arnau from Adora. Rudolf was the more superior athlete and overpowered Arnau with a fantastic Ippon to take the BRONZE medal.

Aristos Michael in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Aristos Michael in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Aristos Michael won his first contest in the -81 Kg category against Johan Blanc from Monaco with an Ippon. In the final he fought Tizie-Jean-Thierry Gnamien, again from Monaco where they fought a very close contest. Aristo was unlucky to go down with a Waza-ari for a throw that could have gone either way and then in the third minute was thrown for Ippon.  SILVER for Arito and another excellent result.

Giorgos Kroussaniotakis in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Giorgos Kroussaniotakis in action - Photo: Cyprus Olympic Committee

Giorgios Kroussaniotakis competed in the -100 Kg category and his first contest was against Por Davidsson from Iceland who he beat by Waza-ari.  In his second contest, Giorgios went a Waza-ari down to Anto Dubreta from Montenegro before beating him by Ippon to take the win. In the final Giorgios fought Danilo Pantic from Montenegro.  The contest was very tight with each athlete attacking the other continuously and a number of almost scores for both other them. In the end the match was decided with a single Waza-ari scored by Pantic.  SILVER for Giorgios and another medal for Cyprus

SIX athletes, FIVE medals – TWO GOLD, TWO SILVER, ONE BRONZE – Excellent performance!

The medals are a tribute to the athletes, their coaches and the national team coaches all of whom were responsible for their medals today.  With a little bit of luck, the two silver medals could have been gold, but saying that all the athletes fought well and justified being selected for the National Team.

The Federation would like to thank all the athletes for making us proud once again by representing Cyprus so well in the Games of the Small States of Europe.

#TeamCyprus – well done to all!

Some more photos of our athletes!

Cadet European Judo Cup Bielsko Biala, Poland 2019

Poland team.jpg

Cyprus was represented at the Cadet European Cup in Poland this past weekend by 8 athletes.

The competition is another tough one with 350 male and 224 female competitors.

First up was Giorgios Balajiasvili in the -60 Kg category at his first international competition since his unfortunate injury at the Pancyprian championship and subsequent operation.  Giorgios started with an Ippon win against Illia Skaepau from Belarus and then another Ippon against Olaf Loska from Poland.  A third Ippon win against Maxim Baltat from Moldova saw Giorgios in the semi-final against Vladyslav Kazimov from Ukraine.  After a close contest, Giorgos lost by Ippon, but progressed to the third place contest against Kote Kapanadze of Georgia.  Giorgios fought well, but lost by Ippon in the third minute and claimed 5th place over all in the category – an excellent result for his first international competition for many months.

Petros Christodoulides fought in the -50 Kg category and in his first contest beat Yurii Kalinchyk from Ukraine with an Ippon after first going down to a Waza-ari from the Ukrainian.  In his second contest Petros lost to Akos Barczikay from Hungary with an Ippon, but went through to the Repechage where he fought Igor Blaszczak frm Poland beating him on a technical win, but then losing to Emile Merdin from Belgium by Ippon. Petros finished 9th over all in the category.

Christos Georghiou in the -66 Kg came up against Yamato Fukuda from Japan where he fought well, but lost by Ippon in the second minute, unfortunately he did not proceed any further in the tournament.

In the -66 Kg category, Spantios Orthodoxos fought Kevin Abeltshauser from Germany. After a close contest, Spantios lost by Ippon in the third minute – again he did not proceed any further.

Representing Cyprus in the -73 Kg category was Panagiotis Shakos who came up against Matvei Karas from Russia for his first contest.  This lasted the whole 4 minutes, but Panagiotis won with a Waza-ari. In his second contest he came up against Jarne Duyck from Belgium where he lost in the final minute with an Ippon. In the Repechage, Panagioti came up against Akaki Mumladze of Georgia where he lost by Ippon.

Alexey Gladyshev competed in the -90 Kg category where he first came up against Viachasiau Chuyashkov from Belarus.  Alexey scored first with a Waza-ari, but then lost to the athlete from Belarus with an Ippon.

In the -81 Kg category, Ilia Gladushev fought Vuk Bosnjak from Serbia where he beat him in the first minute with an Ippon.  In his second contest he fought Tymur Valieiev from Ukraine, but lost with a Waza-ari and subsequent Ippon.

Representing our women was Zanet Michailidou in the +70 Kg category where she came up against Szilvia Farkas from Hungary who unfortunately overpowered Zanet in the first minute with an Ippon.

The team was accompanied by Christos Christodoulides, Technical Director of the Federation.

All of our athletes from Cyprus fought very well against some very tough competitors and have gained some valuable experience from the competition as well as making us all proud.

Well done to all the atheletes!

News from Baku & Kaunas

Our athletes have been in action again at two tournaments this weekend in Baku, Azerbaijan and Kaunas, Lithuania.

At the IJF World Tour competition in Baku was Irodotos Kelpis and Phedias Konnaris

Irodotos Kelpis by ippon to Sinan Sandal from Turkey in the first round of the -66Kg category.


Phedias Konnaris fought well but was eliminated with 3 shido against Robic Pacek from Sweden in the -81 Kg category.


In Kaunas was Loucas Louca, Dato Matsoukatov and Sofia Asvesta

In the -66Kg category Loucas Louca came up against Ennio Mertens from the Netherlands.  Louca scored first with a Waza-ari but Mertins came back with an Ippon to beat Louca and went on to take fifth place.

Dato Matsoukatov was in the -73Kg category.  He won his first contest against Sigurd Stokke from Norway with Ippon, but lost his second contest to Daniel Nuriev of Estonia with an Ippon.

In the Women’s -52Kg category, Sofia Asvesta came up against Jasmine Hacker-Jones from the UK in her first contest. Both athletes scored a Waza-ari and in Golden Score both had 2 Shido each, but Sofia was given a third Shido and lost the contest – one that took 9 minutes and 10 seconds in total.