Bulgaria’s best man judoist – Ivaylo Ivanov will have the chance to win a gold medal in the Marrakech Grand Prix 2019 later today.
Ivanov was outstanding throughout the whole day defeating all 4 of his opponents.
Montana’s native had a bye-first round and that way he started from the quarter-final in Pool D in the 81 kg category. In the first match, Ivanov overcame the Spaniard Jose Mendiola, as the Bulgarian was awarded a waza-ari score in the Golden Score period.
In the semi-final, Ivaylo outclassed Netherland’s Jim Heijman.
After that, the 24-year-old won his pool with a win against Greece’s Alexios Ntanatsidis. The Greek was pretty passive throughout the whole fight and he was penalized three times and therefore lost.
Then Ivanov faced the winner of Pool C – the Canadian Antoine Valois-Fortier in the finals stage. That was by far the toughest test for Ivanov. He was penalized twice for intentionally avoiding engagement with the Greek, but Ivaylo kept his composure and managed to score first in the Golden Score period.
Later today is the final clash in the category – Ivanov vs. Vedat Albayrak from Turkey. If Ivaylo manages to claim the gold medal he’ll collect the much-needed qualifying points for the Olympic games in Tokyo next year.