As the excitement builds for the upcoming Commonwealth Championships in Malta, the Scottish judo contingent eagerly prepares to showcase their skills on an international stage. With a total of 16 judokas from Scotland making their way to Pembroke in the Northern Region of Malta, anticipation is reaching fever pitch. Among them are competitors spanning various categories including pre-cadets, cadets, and seasoned veterans, each ready to leave their mark on the competition. Ahead of the event, we caught up with some of our members.

Coach and former Commonwealth Games gold medalist, Louise Renicks, who will be there in a coaching capacity said: “It’s an opportunity for the athletes to represent Scotland, mix with other countries and step on the mat and give their best. For some of the players, it’s their first time away at an international event and it’s important that the coaching staff make sure their experience is professional and they enjoy themselves.”

Louise has swapped her gi for a coaching tracksuit.

One of those players heading overseas is pre-cadet Stella Cameron, who said: “Competing for Scotland at the Commonwealth Judo Championships in Malta is a great opportunity. Whilst I have been here, I have had the chance to explore some of Malta and experience training at a Maltese Judo Club where we were made to feel very welcome. I look forward to competing on Saturday for Scotland.” Cadet James Rutherford shared his excitement, saying:  “I’m absolutely buzzing for this trip and ready to walk away with a medal.”

Veteran John Thacker, added: “We are proud and honoured to be representing Scotland in this prestigious international event.”

Rick Kenney has been awarded for his services to judo.

Our Vice President, Rick Kenney OBE MBA, who is President of the Commonwealth Judo Association, was honored by the association with a Judo Legacy award, recognising his 60-year journey in the sport.

We’d like to wish the very best to all our Scottish judoka competing: James Rutherford, James McKelvie, Lois Goldie, Logan Goldie, Lewis Yates, Kayla Smith, John Thacker, Arran Brown, Stella Cameron, Murdo Cameron, Sam Brown, Coby Sweetland, Kieran Carson, Luke McCafferty, Anthony Daye, and Sean Doran.