Saskia Brothers – Youth Olympic Games, Buenos Aires, Argentina 1-12 Oct 18

  • Saskia started her competition very late Monday night our time and we watched her 3 matches until 2.30am. Unfortunately there is no video to review so observations which follow are based on watching live. Understandably a little bit tentative in her first match against Djellab from Algeria, Saskia started with a good Uchi-Mata attack and kept enough pressure on her Algerian opponent to force a passivity Shido just past half way.  This was evened out with a Shido to Saskia with 40 seconds to go, but she kept strong with her gripping and movement to visibly wear down her opponent. Just before full time she attacked with Harai and drove it through aggressively for a Waza-Ari for the win. This gave her a little confidence for her next match in the Quarter Final against the eventual Silver medalist Khlifi from Tunisia. Saskia was roughed up from the start with aggressive gripping and a high pulling-in top grip from TUN.  This caught Saskia off-guard but she did well to maintain her composure. However, in the second exchange, Sas was caught with a well-executed spinning Ouchi-Gari for Ippon. Her repechage match was against Bozkurt from Turkey. Another tough start getting roughed up resulted in her eye and then her nose getting caught in the way of her opponent’s hand. Saskia started to assert herself with some dominant gripping allowing several good attacks, including a good cross-grip Osoto. She defended Uchi-Mata and was well in the match but unfortunately whilst pushing forward was caught with a drop Seoi-Nage for Waza-Ari. This rattled her a bit, and unfortunately she was caught in the next exchange with Kouchi-Makikomi. Visibly very disappointed, she should hold her head high and be proud of herself as we are. With a solid year this year and a well-deserved 7th at the YOGs, Saskia can look forward to a promising international career.