Paris (AFP)

Teddy Riner, winner of the Doha Masters in mid-January, will participate in the Tashkent Grand Slam, scheduled for early March in Uzbekistan, the French Judo Federation announced Thursday, to continue preparing for the Tokyo Olympic Games.

The selections for Tashkent, but also for the Grand Slams of Tel Aviv (Israel) and Antalya (Turkey) were made taking into account a complicated health context, underlined Larbi Benboudaoud, director of high performance at the FFJ. .

The 2021 season calendar, published in early January by the international federation, provides for the 2021 Worlds from June 6 to 13 in Budapest (Hungary), just a month and a half before the Tokyo Games, preceded by five big tournaments.

The five Grand Slam tournaments, the most prestigious category on the world circuit, are scheduled in Tel Aviv (February 18-20), Tashkent (March 5-7), Tbilisi (March 26-28), Antalya (April 1-3 ), and Paris (May 8-9).

There will also be European Championships, April 16-18 in Lisbon.

The race for Olympic qualification, interrupted last March and relaunched at the end of October with the timid resumption of the world circuit, has been extended until June 28.

World judo came to a standstill for eight months in 2020, between late February and late October.

Only the Budapest Grand Slam and the European Championships, in Prague at the end of November, have been organized since

Riner (+100 kg), 31, returned to victory at the Doha Masters on January 13 for his return to international competition, almost a year after his loss in Paris - his first in over nine years.

The French champion is aiming for a third Olympic coronation after 2012 and 2016, unprecedented in heavyweight.

© 2021 AFP