Judo: Teddy Riner and Clarisse Agbégnénou in gold at the Paris Grand Slam

Teddy Riner and Clarisse Agbégnénou went for gold at the Grand Slam in Paris, organized in Bercy from February 2 to 4. In a sort of dress rehearsal for French judo before Paris, many others stood out, particularly on the women's side. 

Frenchman Teddy Riner (white) wins against South Korean Kim Minjong (blue) in the +100kg final during the Paris Grand Slam judo tournament in Paris on February 4, 2024. AFP - EMMANUEL DUNAND

By: RFI Follow


Read more

Double Olympic heavyweight champion Teddy Riner won the Paris Grand Slam on Sunday February 4 for the eighth time, a record which perfectly launches his year less than six months before the Olympic Games. The 34-year-old Frenchman, who won in the final against South Korean Kim Min-jong, made his return to the tatamis in individual competition, nine months after his eleventh world champion title in Doha, Qatar.

It’s done,”

Riner said.

I wanted to come, it’s a review

.” In six months, on August 2, he could add, in this same room, a third individual Olympic coronation to an already extraordinary list of achievements. In the meantime, he fulfilled his contract in front of his thousands of fans at Bercy, where he was the favorite, and scored important points in the Olympic rankings with a view to being seeded at the Olympics.

💪🇫🇷 Teddy Riner's eighth victory at the #ParisGrandSlam! #lequipeJUDO pic.twitter.com/3aJx1xUBtQ

— L’ÉQUIPE (@lequipe) February 4, 2024

The way was clear for the French champion. His main potential opponents at the Games, like the Japanese Tatsuru Saito or the Russians Inal Tasoev, with whom he shared the gold medal at the 2023 Worlds, or Tamerlan Bashaev, against whom he lost at the Tokyo Games in 2021, n were not present in Paris. In the final, against the South Korean whom he faced for the first time, the native of Pointe-à-Pitre experienced his only fight with overtime of the day. Against this left-hander who was smaller than him, a profile he feared, Riner finally won after 24 additional seconds.

Agbégnénou “

couldn’t stay on that


” in her pride at the European Championships in November, the reigning French Olympic champion Clarisse Agbégnénou won the Paris tournament (-63 kg) on ​​Saturday for “

banging her fist on the table

”. Under the clamor of the Bercy Arena, the 31-year-old six-time world champion beat the 21-year-old Croatian Katarina Kristo in the final to offer herself a seventh coronation in Paris.


This victory feels good, it was not easy to achieve,”

noted the judoka

. It makes things clear in everyone’s heads, especially everyone


". “

I couldn't stay on that, it wasn't me

,” she said, referring to her missed day at the European Championships in Montpellier. Agbégnénou had a true marathon day, spending 32 minutes on the tatami in five bouts. In the final against Kristo, she came close to losing before winning in overtime.

Listen to that crowd!! Agbegnenou is unreal! 🇫🇷🔥

Follow all the action on https://t.co/5YYXyE0nko 💻#JudoParis #Judo #Paris #France #Sport #Olympics #OlympicQualifiers #RoadToParis2024 #WJT #Impulse pic.twitter.com/PvjOVTAMtI

— Judo (@Judo) February 3, 2024

Lots of gold among women

Beyond the two standard bearers of French judo, the French contingent shone at Bercy. Luka Mkheidze (-60 kg), crowned European champion in November, confirmed this on Friday by winning the Paris Grand Slam for the first time in the Bercy Arena. He beat the South Korean Lee Ha-rim in overtime of the final, on penalty. “

It's good for the confidence, I hope to keep it throughout the preparation

,” said the Tbilisi, Georgia native, a bronze medalist at the 2021 Tokyo Games.

Among women, the harvest of gold was more plentiful. Romane Dicko won in the +78 kg with a final in the form of revenge against the Turkish Kayra Ozdemir, who had beaten her at the same stage of the competition last year. This time, it only took him 39 seconds to win by immobilization. Faiza Mokdar and Shirine Boukli were also titled in the -57 kg and -48 kg categories. 


Receive all the international news directly in your inbox

I subscribe

Follow all the international news by downloading the RFI application

Share :

Continue reading on the same themes:

  • Judo