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Olympic Judo: Fletcher knocked out in Tokyo

Team Ireland’s Benjamin Fletcher took to the mat early this morning in a knockout judo match at Nippon Budokan

Fletcher faced Uzbekistan’s Mukhammadkarim Khurramov in the elimination round of 32 game. This comes after his sister Megan narrowly lost to an Austrian judoka yesterday in the women’s division.

To see a report on that close women’s judo match click the article below.

Olympic Judo: Heartbreak for Fletcher against Austria

Ireland’s 29-year-old broke his leg in two places in February but has managed to recover so he could compete at this Games. He previously came 17th in Rio 2016 competing for Team GB but has fought for Ireland since 2017.

Fletcher started the fight waiting for a time to strike, trying to read his opponent. After a minute and twenty seconds, he received a Shido penalty for non combativity.

This caused the Irish man to lower his guard and allow the Uzbekistani judoka to get a Waza-Ari just before two minutes.

Later the fight became cagey as Fletcher knew he needed a score to give him a chance. Khurramov was frustrating his Irish opponent and got a Shido penalty for a false-attack.

Time ticked away and the Uzbekistani judoka was named winner by Waza-Ari Sode-tsurikomi-goshi.

That result spells the end of Fletcher’s chances of a sought-after gold in Tokyo, joining his sister Megan in what will be a disappointing game for him. Still only at the age of 29, he has ability to reach another Olympics in Paris in three years time.

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