Judo A’ Girls

The A Girls Judo Team Finals concluded on 2 April at Hougang Secondary School. Spectators were treated to a fine display of sportsmanship and determination as the Judokas from both schools braved through throws and leg sweeps to bring glory to their schools. Our female judokas fought hard and eventually emerged victorious against their opponents from Raffles Institution after an intense competition that lasted no more than half an hour. Well done!

Before we get into the Finals proper, here is some basic information on Judo.

Basic game play

Judo is a modern martial arts sport, with the main objective of throwing an opponent, subduing them with a pin and thereby coercing them to submission.

There are 5 rounds in total for a team match. The team who wins at least 3 out of the 5 bouts wins the tournament. The 5 rounds are split into respective weight categories, namely “Featherlight”, “Extralight”, “;Light”, “Middle” and “Heavy”, with each round lasting 3 minutes.

Point System

Ippon – Successfully throwing an opponent on his back with force and power. A bout is immediately won with an Ippon.

Waza-ari – A less powerful throw compared to the Ippon, but the opponent still lands on his back. Two waza-aris is equivalent to an ippon, and the fight would be decided.

Yuko – Throwing an opponent, in which he/she lands on his/her side. Yuko awards very little score, and is only useful when the scores are tied to decide the winner.

Shido – A form of penalty. Immediate disqualification occurs if a judoka accumulates four penalties. If there is a tie whereby judokas from both sides did not manage to score any of the three types of points above, the judoka with a lower number of penalty wins.

At the end of 3 minutes, the judokas are scored in each category and the person with a higher value score wins the round.

Let us first meet our glorious female Judokas!

1) Yeexian Liew
2) Ashley Teoh
3) Judith Toh
4) Catherine Cai
5) Ashley Tan

Judo Finals 1

Round 1: Feather Light Category
(Yeexian Liew) HCI vs (Cheong Hui Shuyan) RI

Once the round started, the Judokas from both sides wasted no time and tightly grabbed each other’s Judogi. There was fire in the eyes of Hui Shuyan as she swept her leg and twisted her body in order to cause her opponent to lose balance and fall. At 1 minute and 17 seconds to the end of the round, Hui Shuyan managed to trip and tumble Yeexian, scoring herself 1 Yuko. Determined, Yeexian bravely held her ground and withstood the subsequent impactful leg punches from her opponent. The round eventually ended with RI scoring one more Yuko.

Round 2: Extra Light Weight Category
(Ashley Teoh) HCI vs (Amanda Chia) RI

The intensity was turned up a notch in this round. The two Juokas got into a fiery start, kicking and pulling each other with gutso. Both girls tumbled and rolled around numerous times to the delight of the spectators. However, the officials did not deem the attacks worthy of points leading to a drought for both teams. 33 seconds into the game, Ashley Teoh finally ended the drought with her well calculated attack that sent her opponent flying to the ground. That move earned us 1 Yuko. Keeping the momentum, Ashley Teoh managed to pin down her opponent 16 seconds later. Ashley kept her cool and executed beautiful Osae komi waza or holding down technique. She managed to subdue her struggling opponent for a full 20 seconds, resulting in a win by Ippon. This meant that we immediately won the round!

Round 3: Light Weight Category
(Judith Toh) HCI vs (Tania Forichon) RI

Round 3 was a quick round. With only 18 seconds into the game, Tania Forichon managed to tumble down Judith Toh in a lightning speed flip. In doing so, Tania Forichon earned herself 1 Yuko. Unfazed, Judith Toh calmly executed her slew of attacks, almost causing her opponent to lose balance numerous times. However, the battle-hardened Tania Forichon managed to seize control of the game and threw Judith Toh on her back with a quick tumble. That attack won RI an Ippon, concluding the round. Although the game ended quickly, we would like to commend Judith Toh for her perseverance and for giving her opponent a tough fight. Well done!

Round 4: Middle Weight Category
(Catherine Cai) HCI vs (Joey Low) RI

Round 4 was the round in which the first Waza-ari was scored. Catherine Cai wasted no time and executed a fusillade of attacks at her opponent. With a vice grip of her opponent’s Juogi, she flipped her opponent confidently onto the ground. The well executed attack earned us the Waza-ari. During the rest of the round, Catherine Cai cleverly dodged attacks from her opponent, preventing Joey Low from scoring any points. 

Judo Finals 2

Round 5: Heavy Weight Category
(Ashley Tan) HCI vs (Joyce Lee) RI

Te-waza (hand techniques) and Ashi-waza (foot techniques) were aplenty in this round. Both girls tumbled and rolled numerous times trying to cause each other to fall. No points were scored until 36 seconds into the game whereby Ashley Tan flipped our opponent onto the mats. That gave us a Yuko! Ashley Tan then went forth to execute a mixture of Kansetsu waza (joint locks) and Osae Komi Waza (hold down techniques) to pin down our opponent. Our opponent pushed on and tried to release herself from the vicious attack but was unable to do so before 20 seconds was up. This meant that we won the round by an Ippon! Awesome!

With that, our girls triumphed 3-2 over RI. It was certainly a feast for the eyes to watch our girls give in all they got for the glory of our school. All the blood, sweat and tears that was put into the preparation for the Finals was certainly worth it! Congratulations!

 Judo Finals 4

Judo A’ Boys

Shortly after the girls’ competition concluded, the much-awaited A Division Judo Boys Finals commenced. The competition venue was packed with supporters from both powerhouses, Hwa Chong and Raffles Institution. Cheers filled the air as the nerve-wrecking competition proceeded. Eventually, our boys emerged as National Runner-Ups in the event. Well Done!

Let us now look at our mighty Judokas!

1) Chua Minghao
2) Tan Zhongyang
3) Wu Jian Kai
4) Choo Yan Kai
5) Hui Si Jian

 Judo Finals 5

 Round 1: Feather Light Category
(Chua Minghao) HCI vs (Davis Yep) RI

The first round started off in a fiery manner with both judokas gripping each other’s judogi intently. Our opponent twisted his body numerous times hoping to bring Minghao down on his back. However, those twists were no match for Minghao’s excellent sense of balance. Our opponent then changed his technique. With several sweeps to Minghao’s leg, he managed to swiftly bring Minghao down. This is gave RI one Yuko. Close to the last minute, Minghao got pinned down by his opponent. Thrusting his whole weight on Minghao, Minghao was subdued. With all his grit, Minghao managed to shake himself out of the relentless grip of his opponent fast enough before any point was awarded to RI. Although the first round went to RI, the fighting spirit of Minghao is highly laudable.

 Judo Finals 6

Round 2: Extra Light Weight Category
(Tan Zhong Yang) HCI vs (Ong Jia Xiang) RI

Watching round 2 was akin to watching an action movie. Both sides eagerly launched attacks at each other continuously. 21 seconds into the game, Zhong Yang managed to score a Yuko for the team. With a clever combination of Koshi Waza (hip techniques) and Ashi Waza (leg techniques), Zhong Yang twisted and flipped his opponent to the ground. Driven, our opponent did a somersault and tumbled down Zhong Yang much to the cheers of the spectators from Raffles. On the other hand, Hwa Chong supporters watched with trepidation. Luckily, Zhong Yang managed to position his fall such that no points were awarded. What a relief! At the last 43 seconds Zhong Yang gave it his all and attempted several attacks. While he managed to tumble his opponent several times, no scores were awarded. The round went to our brave Zhong Yang who edged over his opponent by 1 Yuko. Good job!

Round 3: Light Weight Category
(Wu Jian Kai) vs (Julius Sander Nugroho) RI

This was the round that got the hearts of many spectators palpitating. Jian Kai brought home the first point of the game. The opponent fell helplessly under the brilliant techniques of Jian Kai. Jian Kai’s effort earned him a Yuko. Our opponent was quick to react to his first fall and managed to take on Jian Kai’s onslaught of somersaults, preventing any points from being awarded to HCI. As Jian Kai calculated his next move, the opponent seized the opportunity to get a vice grip on Jian Kai’s Judogi and flipped him to the ground with verve. That swift attack earned RI a Waza-ari, giving them the lead. The clock ticked as both Judokas continued their fight. At the last 10 seconds, a flip by Jian Kai earned HCI another Yuko. However, that was still not enough for a win. Hearts raced as the final few seconds ticked by. It seemed impossible for another attack. Many spectators were certain the Hwa Chong was bound to lose. At the very last second, the impossible happened. With a powerful throw, Jian Kai managed to flip his opponent to the ground! No, it was not a Yuko that was awarded! It was a Waza-ari! We actually won! Jian Kai’s efforts and never say die attitude were greeted by a rapturous applause from the spectators. What a sight!

 Judo Finals 7

Round 4: Middle Weight Category
(Choo Yan Kai) vs (Henry Neo) RI

The round started with numerous attacks from the opponent. 26 seconds into the game, the opponent raised his leg high into the air, tripping Yan Kai over. Yan Kai was quick to react to the predicament and positioned his fall in a way that prevented any points from being awarded to RI. It was only at the last half of the round that RI’s attacks yielded results. At the half way mark, our opponent managed to flip Yan Kai onto the ground, earning himself a Waza-ari. Yan Kai pressed on and continued to launch several attacks, tripping his opponent numerous times. Unfortunately, no points were awarded, much to the disappointment of our supporters. Close to the final minute, our opponent managed a front flip that saw Yan Kai flying through the air and tumbling on his back. The officials considered it an Ippon and RI won the round. Although we lost the round, Yan Kai’s calm demeanour in the face of stiff competition definitely deserves some praise.

Round 5: Heavy Weight Category
(Hui Si Jian) vs (Wei Yong Ji) RI

It all depended on this final round to determine the winner. Cheers from both sides filled the air as spectators tried to give their final encouragements to the judoka from their school. Hwa Chong took the early lead in this round. In 30 seconds, Si Jian managed to flip his opponent sideways by locking his opponent’s feet. That earned HCI a Yuko, much to the delight of our supporters. At the halfway mark, our opponent executed an attack and tumbled Si Jian . A Yuko was awarded to RI. The officials’ decision shocked many spectators as many did not think that the attack was worthy of any points. After letting the game proceed for a few seconds, the officials paused the game and gathered for a decision. The competition venue quietened slightly as everyone awaited the outcome. Will there be a reversal of the point awarded? Yes there was! The Yuko awarded earlier was removed and RI was given a penalty instead. With that, we maintained our lead!

However, RI fought back strong. At the final minute, a powerful throw by the opponent earned them a Waza-ari! As RI edged over HCI at such a crucial point, supporters from HCI cheered their lungs out to spur Si Jian on. Not wasting every second, Si Jian launched a slew of attacks to try to turn the table around. However, the opponent managed to pin Si Jian down. Si Jian tried his utmost best to try to break free, but was unable to do so before the 15 second mark arrived. With that, RI scored another Waza-ari, enough to let them win the round. Despite the result, cheers for Si Jian continuously filled the air to congratulate him for his effort. Good job!

Judo Finals 8

Judo Finals 9

With that, the A Divsion Boys Judo Finals concludes. Hwa Chong has clinched National Runner-Ups with an overall score of 2-3. It was certainly a joy to watch our judokas display such finesse for the sport that they are passionate about. We certainly look forward to more Judo action from our Judokas next year! All the best!

Relive the excitement from this video!

40th CCA PROs

Categories: CCASports

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