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Since Nicolas Gill is the boss of Judo Canada, his “project Christa Deguchi” may become the most analyzed by the time of the Tokyo olympic Games.
This athlete born to a japanese mother and a canadian father has given Canada its first medal in women’s history at the world championships, the 20th of September last, by finishing third in Azerbaijan. It was the result most striking for its decision to compete now as a Canadian after an abstention from all international competition for three years, made obligatory after the refusal of the japan federation to grant him his release.
With his podium history and the fifth largest in the world among the 57 pounds that she is, Gill admits to be reassured up to now.
“Yes because no matter what is the decision that creates the discontent, there is a risk “, raises the general manager and high performance director for Judo Canada.
Snatch this hope of an olympic medal in the birthplace of judo, where will host the Games in 2020, moreover, represents “five years of effort,” according to Gill. The bronze medal and silver at the world junior championships in 2013 and 2014, awarded the gold medal in the team competition at these two events, Deguchi has long piqued the curiosity of Canada.
“No need to be an expert to know that a medal at the world junior championships, it reflects a high level for a female athlete in Japan. Especially in girls, where this country has a lot of depth, ” says the double olympic medallist.
Better chance with Canada
At a distance, the leader in quebec has observed the evolution of the law student. Being courted by various professional teams in Japan, graduating from the university of Yamanashi has opened a window for new approaches. In the different scenarios which were submitted to him, Deguchi has finally decided to wear the colours of Canada, while remaining in Japan, where his own coaches watch over its development.
It does not have a patent of financing as its équipières canadian – she would have had to relocate to the national training centre in Montreal, but a federation of its adoption shall bear its expenses during international competitions. For her, it was with the Canada that she considered to have better chances of qualifying for the 2020 Games considering the enhanced depth of the sport in Japan.
“I wanted to fight. I wanted to test myself to see if I could get there. Given that I am also Canadian, I thought I’d try my luck with Canada. There was no guarantee that I would succeed. I am grateful for the support that Team Canada and the Canadians have placed in me since I joined the team “, we wrote Deguchi via email to explain her decision.
As soon as his eligibility as a Canadian in the fall of 2017, the judoka 23-year-old has aligned with a few strokes of brilliance : victories in the Grand Slam of Paris, the Grand Prix of Zagreb and Hohhot (China) and the pan american championships, and then third at the world championships.
If this native of Nagano arrived in the 2020 Games, his story will surely make the headlines in Japan. By the band, Nicolas Gill also…
More heavy, they are immune to the rivalry
The ” old ” Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard would also have been faced with the steamroller called Christa Deguchi. By accessing the the category of 63 kg, it can, however, hope to participate in her second olympic Games in 2020.
Since the olympic Games in Rio, the largest battle of Quebec was outside of the tatami. Its recurrent difficulties to remain in the 57 kilos, to the point of undermining its life and the quality of its training, have convinced a year ago to move to the weight class above. Nothing to do with the arrival of the mighty Japanese, who avails himself of his canadian citizenship in order to qualify for the olympic Games in Tokyo.
“It had no influence,” says the native of Saint-Hubert, a double medalist at the junior world championships in 2013 and 2014 as Deguchi.
“A good decision “
With five podiums at the Grands Prix and the pan american championships, the results obtained give reason.
“It was a good decision. I even think it was a turning point in my career. Now, I can see myself compete in the longer term, even up to the Games of 2024. I can focus on my judo without worrying about to meet a weight class. If I had remained at 57 kilos, I’d burned and I’d be tired of judo. “
Rivalry to the internal
Considering that a country may have only one athlete per weight category in the olympic Games, the new entrant in the canadian team, Christa Duguchi, will work definitely on the feet of other athletes based in Montreal. The Ontarian Jessica Klimkait, ninth in the world rankings, could prove to be the first victim.
“The decision to Christa to fight for Canada has only served to motivate me further to Tokyo 2020. As an athlete who is not afraid of challenges, I can just see this one as a stimulant to make me even better, ” responded by e-mail the 21 year old athlete.
“It has no advantage compared to others, and he will have to earn his way to go to the olympic Games,” says Nicholas Gill about his acquisition of japanese-canadian. “That’s right, the sport. For me, the goal is to have a team that will win medals. This is one of the goals of our high performance program and of our financial partners. “