Newbury's Olivia Delahunty claims gold medal at England competition in London
Newbury Judo Club’s Olivia Delahunty competed for the first time in 18 months at the English Closed Pre-cadet/Cadet Competition at UCL University in London.
This event was also the selection event for the 2021/2022 England Talent Development squad.
As this was her first competition in 18 months, Delahunty had moved up a weight division to U63kg and was understandably nervous.
Due to her high ranking prior to the coronavirus pandemic, her first fight was a BYE.
Her second fight was against Julia Marczak from Judo Sensei, who she threw to the floor and followed this up with a strangle to win by Ippon.
Her next fight was the sem-final against Queenie Tancock from Bishops Stortford.
The Newbury competitor started slowly and went a score down before gaining control and throwing for a Wazari score and followed straight into a hold down for the Ippon win.
The final was against Olivia Simpson, also from Bishops Stortford.
Delhunty was in control from the start and threw her opponent for Ippon within a minute, before taking the gold medal and earning her place on the England Squad.
Nicki Harris, who is head coach at Newbury Judo Club, has been her coach for nine years and she was on hand to coach her on the day.
She said she was pleased with Olivia’s attitude and performance, especially after such a long forced layoff.