Aoife’s Olympics comes to a close

Olympic dream over: Traralgon's Aoife Coughlan bowed out in the Round of 16 of the Women's 70kg Judo event in Tokyo yesterday. file photograph

Zac Standish

TRARALGON’S Aoife Coughlan’s Olympic debut came to a crushing end in the Round of 16 of the Women’s 70kg Judo event yesterday, falling to world number nine Giovanna Scoccimarro.

Coming into the competition with a world ranking of 25, her campaign got underway with a Round of 32 bout against Kiribati’s Kinaua Biribo.

With a gap of over 120 separating the two competitors on the rankings table, the 25-year old Australian came into the contest with high expectations and proceeded to show off her class and composure from the opening seconds.

After a cautious start, Biribo would make her move at the Australian one minute into the fight, which Coughlan was able to easily see off with a nifty leg manoeuvre countering the advances and allowing her to place her competitor in a submissive position.

Holding her down for the required 10 seconds, Coughlan was duly handed the win with a 10-0 score line progressing her to the Round of 16 some 50 minutes later.

Faced with accomplished German Judoka Scoccimarro, who claimed a Bronze medal at the recent 2021 Judo World Masters in Doha, it would be a stark rise in competition as Coughlan came to the mat for a second time.

Following two bouts that went into golden score, the German took it to Coughlan from the beginning with her tenacity and strength causing immediate problems for the Latrobe Valley export.

Trying her best to combat the strength of Scoccimarro, it quickly became apparent the skill of her competitor would overwhelm Coughlan as a strong flip move from the German saw the Australian hit the ground hard and the referee call the bout over after 65 seconds.

Falling to a score line of 10-0, it was not the result Coughlan was after following a promising eighth placed showing at the World Judo Masters earlier in the year.

Coughlan suffered the same fate as fellow Australian Judoka’s Katharina Haecker and Nathan Katz who fell in the Round of 16 in their respective Women’s 63kg and Men’s 66kg competitions earlier in the week.

Round of 32: Aoife Coughlan (AUS) 10 defeated Kinaua Biribo (KIR) 0
Round of 16: Giovanna Scoccimarro (GER) 10 defeated Aoife Coughlan (AUS) 0.