Closing in to a very special event in Georgia, with the Covid19 still as a strong factor. No doubt that the the pandemic have an impact at the tournament, but everything is set to go off as planned. The difference between how the nations have been able to prepare are huge. Some nation has not been allowed to train and do sparring, others close to normal. Anyway, we dive into the categories to take a look into the line up..
Women -55 kg 15 fighters
With fifteen fighters in the line-up and with several high merited fighters this category will be exciting to follow. European champions – that is not so strange, but the category do also have a world champion:
Teona Gazdeliani. She won the KWU championship in 2017, and became the runner up in 2019 – entering a higher weight class. The most of you will connect Teona Gazdeliani to representing Spain – but this time it seems that it will be Georgia. (Born in Georgia) Anyway, she will be the heavy favorite.
Probably someone would like to have a word or two in that discussion, the reign EC Champion from Poland Anna Bielska will for sure into the top level. Bielska was also in the final in 2018,but lost to Skaistė Venckutė / Lithuania.
If Teona Gazdeliani and Anna Bielska face each other, it will be a battle of the styles. Gazdeliani very tough at short distance, good pressure and well known for her high powerful punches. Bielska superb technician, good variation and some serious kicking-skills. Can Gazdeliani close the distance and choke down the technical Bielska? Or will Bielska “dance along” with dangerous knees?
Besides that, we got Eider Cardenosa / Spain, who won the EFKO EC – just before the pandemic shut all down. In the same tournament, Cardenosa fought a German fighter in the final, Anastasia Mikhalova – also in the line-up. Cardenosa has been quite active in many tournaments, but the most impressive would be that she reached into top 8 in the EC Open-Weight in 2018, Hungary. And with that result she did qualify to the 12th World Karate Open Championship.
Lithuania with two experienced fighters: Evelina Bidžanova and Gerda Pekarskaite <– . We know the level of Lithuania – but a fact is that the -55kg category was the only category without Lithuanian fighter on the podium last EKO EC – could it be changed this time? Worth mention, I that we do also have several young fighters, U21 EC champions and more. We have seen that first time seniors now come into the top four – that is how good prepared they are.
Photo by pufasfoto.lt
Ten nations with fifteenth fighters in this category, and there will for sure be fighters that will be noticed during the championship that we have not seen at top level before.