Doha (AFP)

Teddy Riner crossed the first round of the Judo Masters by ippon for his return to the international tatami mats almost a year after his loss in the Paris tournament on Wednesday in Doha.

Riner (31), who aims to win a third Olympic coronation in Tokyo next summer - unprecedented in heavyweight - has twice knocked down his first opponent, the Dutchman Roy Meyer, for the first time in the after two minutes of fighting, then a second about thirty seconds from the gong.

The reigning two-time Olympic champion and ten-time world champion will fight against Georgian Gela Zaalishvili for a place in the quarter-finals.

Riner had seen his more than nine-year-long invincibility end last February in the third round of the Paris tournament, against Japanese N.2 Kokoro Kageura, after 154 consecutive fights.

Then the Covid-19 pandemic then greatly upset the competition calendar, in particular with the postponement of the Olympics-2020 for one year.

© 2021 AFP