Valiant Val fights the pain

A CITY of Ely Community College student has won gold at the Eastern Area under-16s Closed Invitational judo tournament. Val Agafonov, overcame a painful rib injury to win the over-81kg category in a best-of-three playoff final. Val won the first rubber wi

A CITY of Ely Community College student has won gold at the Eastern Area under-16s Closed Invitational judo tournament.

Val Agafonov, overcame a painful rib injury to win the over-81kg category in a best-of-three playoff final.

Val won the first rubber with a hold down, but in the second he sustained the injury as his opponent threw and landed on top of him.

Fighting on in considerable pain, Val lost the second rubber to an ippon but hit back in the decider.


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Knowing that a quick finish was needed, Val produced a double leg grab for an ippon only 20 seconds into the round.

The gold medal is Val's second in consecutive competitions, having won the prestigious Kent international tournament at Crystal Palace.

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Val has also successfully graded at eighth mon and is aiming for qualification for the British Championships to be held in Sheffield later in the year.

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