JudoScotland Welcomes International Visitors to Scotland

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JudoScotland Welcomes International Visitors to Scotland

Posted: 14/01/2020

With the 2020 Scottish Open Judo Tournament fast-approaching (Saturday 18 January), competitors from over 10 nations are beginning to make their way to Scotland as preparations get underway. 

Scotland continues to be recognised as one of the world’s most friendly countries and we’re excited to be welcoming players from France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Japan and Sweden, as well as those from all of the Home Nations.  Whilst some of these countries have been regular visitors over the past decade, others are fairly new to the ‘Scottish Open’. We’re really excited to build and strengthen our relationship with these nations, with the aim of providing high quality judo opportunities for JudoScotland athletes on a regular basis.  With the event just days away, we’ve put together a short summary of some of the nations coming to compete at this year’s event.

Our German visitors from UJKC Potsdam have been a regular feature at the Scottish Open in an annual exchange between JudoScotland and the Brandenburg Regional Performance Centre. This year they are joined by a group from LV Bayern led by their coach, and multiple British multiple Olympian, Winston Gordon.

Scandinavian Nations
There has been a strong judo link between the Scandinavian nations and Scotland over the generations with both taking advantage of training and competition within each other’s environments. 2020 is no different with more than 30 Scandinavian competitors participating in the Scottish Open, and JudoScotland planning on sending judoka to both Denmark and Sweden later on in the year.

A strong relationship has been building between JudoScotland and JC Sainghin en Melantois over the past few years, with Scotland visiting the international competition hosted by the club, and the French reciprocating the visit by competing in our Scottish Open event. There are also players from CS Bretigny at this year’s event, in a further continuation of the French/Scottish relationship.

We’re really excited to be welcoming three competitors from the world-renowned Tsukuba University for the very first time. The trio will be led by Goki Tajima, who secured Bronze at the 2019 All Japan Championships (-90kg). The Tsukuba connection is an exciting development which has thrived since the appointment of Takafumi Kitahara as a JudoScotland National Performance coach.  Last year, JudoScotland sent a group to Tsukuba University as part of a 3-week training camp in Tokyo, and we’re delighted to be able to return the favour this week at our own National Randori sessions.

Trinidad and Tobago
We are pleased to welcome back Gabriella Wood to this year’s event.  Wood, who now bases her training in Scotland and is coached by Judo Club Esprit’s Lee Calder, is training hard as she attempts to become the first judoka from Trinidad and Tobago to qualify for an Olympic Games.

The Home Nations
Of course, we are once again delighted to welcome all of our Home Nation judoka who regularly support the Scottish Open competition and training day. There are competitors from England, Wales and Northern Ireland with all of the performance training centres, and many of the strongest competitive clubs in Britain, being represented.

In preparation for the event, we’re excited to be welcoming judoka from Germany, Sweden and Japan to our National Training Centre for Randori throughout the week. We’re very proud of our relationship with these nations and the great opportunities it provides for our athletes, and hope that the link continues to strengthen in the future.  These relationships continue to contribute to the success of the Scottish Open and once again, this year’s event is primed to be an exciting and compelling day of judo.

The 2020 Scottish Open Judo Tournament is taking place on Saturday 18 January at sportscotland Inverclyde National Sports Training Centre.  Entry is £5 (u16s go free).