Romania strives for medal at European Judo Championships in Warsaw

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Romania strives for one medal in the European Judo Championships in Warsaw, which will take place from April 20 to 23, and the judoka from the 48-kg, 52-kg categories (both female) and 100 kg (male) represent our biggest chances to the podium, said the Secretary general of the Romanian Judo Federation, Gheorghe Savu to Agerpres.

Monica Ungureanu (48 kg cat.), bronze medalist at EC 2016, Larisa Florian (52 kg), Michael Chitu (52 kg), bronze at the EC 2016, and Daniel Natea (+100 kg), bronze at the EC 2016 are the judoka we place our hopes in for a medal. Andreea Chitu, European champion in 2012 and 2015, competes for the first time after the injury suffered at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

'"We strive for a medal. We hope to get a medal in the 48, 52 kg, possibly 100 kg categories, where we have Daniel Natea. These are our traditional categories, where we have always achieved results. Andreea Chitu comes after an injury and she has not competed since the Olympics. She has recovered, but it's harder to get in shape. Her objective is the World Championships, but she will do everything she can now and if she catches a good day she might surprise us,'' said Gheorghe Savu.

Florin Bercean will participate as vice-president at the EC 2017, but still remains the women's coach, said Gheorghe Savu: ' Florin Bercean will be there and if required he will accompany the athletes, will provide indications. He has remained the group's coordinating coach, as vice-president has the performance responsibility, he is in charge of both women and men."

The European Championships in Warsaw host 400 athletes from 42 countries, including 12 judoka from Romania. Poland hosts for the third time the European Judo Championships, after the 1994 edition (Gdansk) and 2000 edition (Wroclaw). The matches' lots draw is scheduled for Wednesday, and the competition begins on Thursday, April 20th, with the female 48, 52 and 57 kg categories, respectively the 60 kg and 66 kg male categories. On Friday the matches at the 63 and 70 kg categories (female) and 73 and 81 kg (male) will take place. On Saturday, there will be the competitions at the 78 and +78 kg (female), and at 90, 100 and +100 kg (male) categories. On Sunday, the last day, the female and male teams contests are due with Romania only participating in the male team competition.

In the women's category, Romania will participate with four judoka in just two categories, Alexandra Pop and Monica Ungureanu at the 48 kg category, and Andreea Chitu and Larisa Florian at the 52 kg category.

In the male competition, will participate Laszlo Szoke (66 kg categ.) — participant in the team competition, Alexandru Raicu and Marcel Cercea in the 73 kg category, Vlad Visan and Elemer Szocs in the 81 kg category, Cristian Bodarlau, the 90 kg one, Daniel Matei in the 100 kg, Daniel Natea in the +100 kg category.AGERPRES(RO — author: Teodor Ciobanu, editor: Mihai Tenea; EN — author: Simona Iacob, editor: Maria Voican; online editor: Maria Voican)

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