Despite the absence of French superstar Teddy Riner there was still enough for the Bercy crowd to celebrate on the second and final day of competition at the Paris Grand Slam. Following Clarise Agbenenou’s gold medal win in the -63kg category yesterday, Cyrille Maret took his turn atop the podium by winning the -100kg for the third year running. Maret had wins against Javad MAHJOUB (IRI), Artem BLOSHENKO (UKR), Jorge FONSECA (POR), Elmar GASIMOV (AZE) and, in the final, Kyle REYES (CAN).
Asked to explain what was special about competing at Bercy Maret answered, "I have to be honest and say that when it comes to competitions there is nowhere like Bercy. I have had many good times here, especially as my family are able to be here and it feels like home.” The French can be reasonably happy with their results. Two gold, a silver and six bronze medals (as well as some useful performances by other team members) made for a good weekend. "Of course there were lots of people in the crowd who would have liked to have seen Teddy (Riner) compete. But with him being injured I felt a little as though it was down to me to give the crowd something to cheer for and make sure that the anthem was played," said Maret.
Being the focus of attention was a new experience for Maret. "Some people talk about me as one of the favourites but I don’t feel that way. I’ve never won a world championship medal and I don’t think that I can be classed as a favourite until I have done that,” said Maret.
Winning in Paris obviously agrees with Maret as he was in a particularly good mood. "I had a little fun with some of the crowd some, of whom are from the south west, and I had a special celebration for them. There are of course some areas of my performance that I want to improve upon, in particular after my disappointment in Astana, and i am working with my coaches on a number of things. But it is really in my hands to improve and my plan is to have everything in place for Rio."
|-81 kg1. TCHRIKISHVILI, Avtandili (GEO) 2. IVANOV, Ivaylo (BUL) 3. PENALBER, Victor (BRA) 3. WANG, Ki-Chun (KOR)||-70 kg1. KIM, Seongyeon (KOR) 2. TACHIMOTO, Haruka (JPN) 3. CONWAY, Sally (GBR) 3. EMANE, Gevrise (FRA)|
|-90 kg1. NISHIYAMA, Daiki (JPN) 2. IDDIR, Alexandre (FRA) 3. GWAK, Dong Han (KOR) 3. LIPARTELIANI, Varlam (GEO)||-78 kg1. AGUIAR, Mayra (BRA) 2. HARRISON, Kayla (USA) 3. MALZAHN, Luise (GER) 3. POWELL, Natalie (GBR)|
|-100 kg1. MARET, Cyrille (FRA) 2. REYES, Kyle (CAN) 3. FREY, Karl-Richard (GER) 3. WOLF, Aaron (JPN)||-78 kg1. AGUIAR, Mayra (BRA) 2. HARRISON, Kayla (USA) 3. MALZAHN, Luise (GER) 3. POWELL, Natalie (GBR)|
|+100 kg1. HARASAWA, Hisayoshi (JPN) 2. SASSON, Or (ISR) 3. MEYER, Roy (NED) 3. MOURA, David (BRA)|