Canadian Judo Team Named for 2022 Commonwealth Games
MONTREAL – (2022 – 06 – 21) – Commonwealth Sport Canada (CSC) and Judo Canada today announced the athletes who will represent Team Canada in judo at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England, taking place July 28 to August 8, 2022.
Judo is now a core sport in the Commonwealth Games programme. It was previously excluded for the 2018 edition in the Gold Coast but has now been reinstated as a core sport. Birmingham 2022 will be the fourth time the sport of judo is contested in the Commonwealth Games, following appearances at Auckland 1990, Manchester 2002 and Glasgow 2014.
Judo Canada selected nine athletes to represent Canada at the Commonwealth Games based on the International Judo Federation (IJF) ranking points and National Team standards as of June 13, 2022
Even though this will be the first participation in the Commonwealth Games for all the athletes selected by Judo Canada, the team is very experienced.
“We are excited by the naming of a strong Judo team for Birmingham and anticipate a number of podium performances from this group,” says Scott Stevenson, Executive Director, Team Canada 2022. “This mix of top ranked athletes in combination with the up and commers is a winning formula and has proven successful for the Team Canada judo team during past Commonwealth Games.”
Notably, on the women’s side, Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard (Saint-Hubert, Quebec), who won a bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics, is competing in the under 63kg category. She is currently ranked fifth in her weight class on the IJF ranking list.
“This is my first competition at the Commonwealth Games, and I am looking forward to the experience. This is part of my preparation for the World Championships in October, and it will be a good opportunity to measure myself against high levels of competition,” said Beauchemin-Pinard.
Another athlete of stature, Christa Deguchi will be aiming for gold in the under 57kg category. In addition to 12 medals won at Grand Slams and Grand Prix events, including nine golds, Christa’s greatest achievements include a gold medal at the 2019 World Championships and a bronze medal at the 2018 World Championships.
In the under 52 kg category, Christa’s younger sister, Kelly Deguchi, will definitely be a medal contender in Birmingham. She won a bronze medal at the Pan American Oceania Championships in Lima, Peru, in April 2022.
The youngster, Coralie Godbout is in a transition period as this is her first year in the senior division. This will be a great opportunity for the national champion to gain experience and get ready for the next tournaments ahead.
On the men’s side, Shady ElNahas, an experienced athlete on a constant rise, will be fighting in the under 100kg category. Shady placed fifth at the Tokyo Olympics and at the 2021 World Championships. The 2022 Pan American Oceania Champion is rank third on the IJF ranking list.
In the same category, the 2016 Olympian, Kyle Reyes, is a four-time Pan American Championships medallist (Champion in 2021) and six-time medallist on the IJF World Tour. The 28-year-old, former Junior World Champion is coming back from a shoulder injury that happened at the recent Antalya Grand Slam event where he placed fifth.
François Gauthier-Drapeau, who will compete in the under 81kg category, has had a tremendous season to date, with two medals at Grand Slams tournaments on the IJF World Tour and a bronze medal at the 2022 Pan American Oceania Championships. He is currently ranked 12th on the IJF ranking list.
In the under 90 kg category, Keagan Young is the youngest member of the male team. Keagan won a bronze medal at the Cadet World Championships in Santiago de Chile in 2017 and he claimed a bronze medal at the Youth Olympic Games in 2018 in Buenos Aires. Despite his age he is very familiar with the big events.
Marc Deschenes is fighting in the plus 100kg category. His career highlight to date is a bronze medal at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam in 2021. The 29-year-old is two-time Pan American Championships medallist and silver medallist at the Pan American Games.
The team will be led by Antoine Valois-Fortier who was appointed Judo Canada Head Coach in January 2022, following his retirement from a brilliant athletic career.
“Our team is very strong, and we are aiming for a total of nine medals at these Commonwealth Games, including five gold. For some athletes it is a great opportunity to participate in a first Games experience, for others this competition is part of the preparation for the World Championships next October,” said Valois Fortier, Olympic medallist, and three-time world medallist.
The majority of the team will be in preparation in Europe before the Games.
The judo competition, which includes 14 events (seven for men and seven for women) will take place over three days at the Coventry Arena in Coventry, England, from August 1st to 3rd 2022.
Birmingham 2022 will feature 19 sports and 8 para-sports as part of its program with up to 4,500 athletes taking part. The Commonwealth Games are the only multi-sport event that feature equal standing for sport and para-sport events, and these 2022 Games will showcase the largest para-sport program ever. In addition, for the first time in its history, the Games will feature more medal events for women (135) than men (133).
The judo team which will represent Canada at the Birmingham 2022 includes:
|Kelly||Deguchi||Matsumoto, Nagano, Japan,||Lethbridge Kyodokan Judo Club, AB||Yamanashi Gakuin University, Japan||Women’s -52 kg|
|Christa||Deguchi||Shiojiri, Nagano, Japan||Lethbridge Kyodokan Judo Club, AB||Yamanashi Gakuin University, Japan||Women’s -57 kg|
|Catherine||Beauchemin-Pinard||Saint-Hubert, QC||Club de judo Saint-Hubert, QC||Judo Canada NTC (INS Quebec)||Women’s -63 kg|
|Coralie||Godbout||Saint-Charles-De-Bellechasse, QC||Kiseki Judo, QC||Judo Canada NTC (INS Quebec)||Women’s -78 kg|
|François||Gauthier-Drapeau||Alma, QC||Club de judo Seiko, QC||Judo Canada NTC (INS Quebec)||Men’s -81 kg|
|Keagan||Young||Markham, ON||AJAX Budokan, ON||Judo Canada NTC (INS Quebec)||Men’s -90 kg|
|Shady||ElNahas||Alexandria, Egypt||JCCC – Judo Kai, ON||Judo Canada NTC (INS Quebec)||Men’s -100 kg|
|Kyle||Reyes||Brampton, ON||Club de judo Shidokan inc., QC||JRA, Tokyo, Japan||Men’s -100 kg|
|Marc||Deschenes||Laval, QC||Club de judo Shidokan inc., QC||Judo Canada NTC (INS Quebec)||Men’s +100 kg|
ABOUT TEAM CANADA 2022
The 2022 Commonwealth Games will be host to 72 participating nations and territories taking part in the Games. The Commonwealth Games are a valuable opportunity as a steppingstone and development opportunity for Canadian athletes, coaches, and managers working towards Olympic and Paralympic success. Canada’s performance projection in 2022 is a top 3 ranking, in total medals, amongst all nations and territories competing. Commonwealth athletes won 80%+ of Canada’s medals at the 2020 Olympic Games
Team Canada’s dedicated mission team will provide an optimal environment by celebrating equality, diversity, and non-discrimination. This is in support of our goals needed to enable a best ever performance by Canadian athletes at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
ABOUT JUDO CANADA
Judo Canada is the national sport governing body for the sport of judo in Canada and has overall authority to provide leadership in promotion and development as well as govern all aspects of Judo in Canada and to select and prepare Canadian teams for international competition. Judo Canada is a not-for-profit Registered Canadian Amateur Athletic Association operating under a board of directors elected by provincial / territorial members.
ABOUT COMMONWEALTH SPORT CANADA
Commonwealth Sport Canada (CSC) is the franchise holder for the Commonwealth Games and the Commonwealth sport movement in Canada. CSC is an active, contributing member of the Canadian sport community and supports Canada’s athletes to achieve excellence at Olympic, Paralympic Games, and world championships. The mission of CSC is to enrich the lives of youth across the Commonwealth and host the Commonwealth Games. CSC is responsible for all aspects of Canada’s participation in the XXII Commonwealth Games and will be sending a team of almost 400 of Canada’s best athletes and coaches to compete for Canada. The upcoming Games will occur in Birmingham, England from July 28 through to August 8, 2022. For additional information go to: www.commonwealthsport.ca.
For more information, please contact:
Communications Coordinator, Judo Canada
Media Attaché – Judo
Communications Team Leader – Team Canada 2022
613 724 7160