European Team – women 2022

As you all know, the European team from World Championship in weight categories are ready. We will take a look into the different categories, who the athletes are, and what we can expect looking forward to the 7th Weight World Championships in Poland 2022. As always: women first.

Close to a new year, we can look back and see who that will represent the European region in the 7th World Championship in 2022. On a general basis, the European region is so big now – and it continues to grow, so the time has come to make the necessary adjustments for this to remain sustainable.

The first thing to pick up, should be coordinate the weight classes in the WC and in the EC, and jut to be clear: the categories in the EC works fine. Number of participants would be the next to bring up – and naturally the number of participants women vs men. Arguments can come up, taken back and forth, but the bottom line can easily be seen clearly if one asks some basic questions.

Do we want this to grow? Do we want this to reach further? Do we want this to be able to compete with other sports? Then we have to include, and not limit activity and initiative. 62 women division in Georgia/ 32 in Lithuania –> 12 spots WC, 75 fighters in Georgia/ 47 in Lithuania –> 24 spots in the WC.

In the lightest category for women -50 kg, a good mix of new blood and good routine. Alona Veresniak / Ukraine, the veteran with top three in the last three European Championships. Veresniak might be a “veteran” in the EC relations, but when it comes to the world weight championship, up to now the results still have to be proven. Lithuania manage to enter the podium in the lightest category in 2013, when the hosted the 5th World Championship. Beaten by Kazakhstan and Japan that time. In 2017, only two countries entered the podium, same as the top nation in 2013, Japan and host Kazakhstan. Can Lithuania take the challenge this time? Brigita Svinkūnaitė / Lithuania became the second fighter from Europe in this category, 19 years old, more or less unknown – besides the 2nd place in EC Georgia. This is a parallel to the third European region fighter in the -50 kg category – Anastasiia Pryshliak / Ukraine. Can the newcomers challenge the top of the world?

Anastasiia Pryshliak / Ukraine , Alona Veresniak / Ukraine, and Brigita Svinkūnaitė / Lithuania

In the -55 kg category we have a little sensation in Nika Jakobović / Croatia, bring aggressive high-pace fighting. We are used to see fighters from a hand full of the same nations each time, so it very gladly see some variations. Beside Nika Jakobović, Teona Gazdeliani Georgia / Spain. In this case it will be Georgia, since Gazdeliani have shared citizenship. Highly merited from other organisations, and with that baggage it is expected that Gazdeliani will bland in at the top. That will depend on the draw, as facing top fighters from t.ex. Japan in early rounds. Last of the participants from Europa: Evelina Bidžanova / Lithuania – has no significant titles or merits, before winning the qualifying competition recently, and it will be exciting to see how far it goes!

Nika Jakobović / Croatia , Evelina Bidžanova / Lithuania and Teona Gazdeliani Georgia

-60 kg category contains a mix of very interesting fighters. Rūta Brazdžionytė / Lithuania – very well merited, and being more or less on the EC EKO/WKO podium for ten years! Know for sure what this is all about, and in this case as well – it is allowed to aim for a higher spot. Lily Mező / Hungary – taken the full-contact scene with storm lately, and how far this will go who can know? The technical aspect of Mező will challenge everyone, and the reach as well. But can Mező keep the pace and the favorite distance of the top fighters from Japan? Last but not least, Camille Haddouche / France. Again, it is very nice to see variation in the nations that attend. Haddouche been working hard, dropping down to under 60 kg category, and became victorious in the qualifying tournament. Both, Mező and Haddouche got technics to finish fights before full time, especially leg technics. And of course all three will work to develop their game into the World Championship.

Camille Haddouche / France , Rūta Brazdžionytė / Lithuania , Lily Mezo / Hungary

+60 kg the heaviest category in the women’s division, we got the mix of two categories – seen out from the EC categories. Ivanka Popova (Deleva) / Bulgaria, with her insane drive and endurance, always pushing the pace in her intense fighting-style. Popova, being the reign EC champion in the -65 kg are in company with the reign EC champion of the category above, Monika Zielińska / Poland. Zielińska made her first appearance in the +65 in Georgia EC where she went trough the category with impressive pace and fighting. Beat not less then three world champions in a row to secure the title and best athlete during the competition. Both, Popova and Zielińska felt the heat from the top fighters of Japan in 2019 12th WC – but that was then, and the development is moving forward. Last one will be Aneta Meškauskienė / Lithuania. Qualifying in the last tournament now recently, fought many long and demanding fights. And a veteran i the game, mainly merited in other organisations, but fighting her way into the ranks of WKO as well. Did also qualify to the 12th World Championship WKO in 2019, now walking into even stiffer competition that should bring the game even higher.

Ivanka Popova (Deleva) / Bulgaria, Monika Zielińska / Poland and Aneta Meškauskienė / Lithuania

The host nation, Poland do also have their representatives in these categories, and top level fighters that we know from several championship are listed up.At the time we have three out of four names: Anna Bielska, Marta Lubos and Agata Winiarska.

Anna Bielska will fight in the -55 kg category, technical – great movement and dangerous kicking skills. In this category is also usually a little height/ reach advantage – if it an be used in the heat of the fight. -60 kg category Marta Lubos, well rounded and good pace. Did the qualifying to the 12th World Championship in 2019, and faced the absolute top level in Japan. Bouncing back from injuries, always great spirit. In the +60 kg category, Agata Winiarska – very well merited, fighting all over the world at the highest level with top results. Keeping it steady, always improving and know what it takes to reach the top. All three will make a factor – how big, time will show.

Marta Lubos – Agata Winiarska – Anna Bielska – from the host Poland