The 42nd edition of the Belgian Open has been run and won, with Australia bagging several medals in the city of Lommel.
Juliet Lahood and Stacey Hymer were Australia’s standout senior performers, dispatching elite competitors on their way to silver and bronze medals. At the same time, Pathways athlete Zaine Mansfield claimed silver in the Juniors.
This was Lahood’s second major medal in two weeks, having captured silver in the Dutch Open. For Tokyo Olympian Hymer, it was another medal for her sizeable trophy cabinet, while Mansfield gained invaluable international experience and some silverware.
There were further strong performances across the board for the Aussies, with the entire seniors getting valuable hitouts on the road to the Paris 2024 Olympics.
Here’s how all the Aussies fared at the Belgian Open.
Day 1 – Seniors
Tristan Fernandez was defeated by Sweden’s Bleron Ademi (via PTF 2:0) in the Round of 32, with Seth Healy losing a tight contest in the same round to Spain’s David Bello Munoz (via PTF 2:1). Anthony Christodoulides battled his way into the Round of 32 with a win over Mohamed Akouch (via PTF 2:0), before falling to Israel’s Tom Pashcovsky (via PTF 2:0).
Ben Camua defeated Albania’s Klaus Demirxhiu (via PTF 2:0) en route to the Round of 32, before losing to the Netherlands’ Aymen Achnine (via PTF 2:0). Damon Motta lost his Round of 64 fight to Kazakhstan’s Yelzhan Yelshibay (via PTF 2:0).
Matthew Summerfield, was narrowly defeated by Cote D’Ivoire’s Ben Younouss Konate (via PTF 2:1) in the Round of 64, while Fida Matin was edged out by Israel’s Dimitriy Nagaev (via PTF 2:0) at the same stage. Ryan Hogg was also defeated by France’s Enzo Comprelle (via PTF 2:0).
In the Round of 64, Luke McMahon was defeated by Spain’s Pablo Patino Pombal (via PTF 2:0), and Athan Rodas was eliminated by Georgia’s Beka Kavtaradze (via PTF 2:0).
Men’s -73 kg
Leon Sejranovic made an impressive run, defeating France’s Seydou O Fofana (via PTF 2:0) and Denmark’s Omar Dawoud (via PTF 2:1) on his way to the Quarter finals, where he lost a tough contest to eventual bronze medallist Marko Golubic (Croatia). Tom Afonczenko and Jamie Cefai suffered narrow defeats in the Round of 64 to Brazil’s Gabriela Pereira Turibio (via PTF 2:1) and the Netherlands’ Dion Weidum (via PTF 2:0).
Liam Sweeney was defeated in a fast-paced Round of 32 bout by Turkey’s Yusuf Kara (via PTF 2:0).
Tyrone Staben lost a highly technical contest to Spain’s Raul Corredor (via PTF 2:0).
Samuel Northey was unfortunately forced to withdraw from his bout with eventual bronze medallist Andreu Perez Campos (Spain) due to an injury.
Juliet Lahood made a brilliant run to the final, defeating Lena Malecka (Poland), Despoina Pantou (Greece) and Ida-elina Tammila (Finland), before losing a competitive gold medal match against Kazakhstan’s Rita Bakisheva. Bianca Motta was unlucky to be eliminated in the Round 0f 64, narrowly losing to Despoina Pantou (via PTF 2:1). Ambrosia Landsberg also gave a strong performance, but was ultimately eliminated by Japan’s Ruka Okamoto (via PTF 2:0).
Saffron Tambyrajah made an impressive run to the Quarter Finals, defeating Matilde Ferreira (Portugal) and Aleksandra Georgieva (Bulgaria), before losing to Thailand’s bronze medallist, Panipak Wongpattanakit (via PTF 2:0).
It took the eventual gold medallist to end Stacey Hymer’s deep run at the tournament. She defeated Biana Lager (Israel), Mariya Sevostyanova (Kazakhstan) and Lin Chen (China) on her way to the Semi Finals. She was eventually defeated by Hungary’s Luana Marton (via PTF 2:0). Anastasia Typou battled her way to the Round of 16 with wins over Joanna Szymczak (Poland) and Klaudija Tvaronaviciute (Lithuania), before losing to Spain’s Arlet Ortiz Benito (via PTF 2:1). Jessica Borg was defeated in the Round of 32 by Great Britain’s Jodie McKew (via PTF 2:0).
Amber Heslop defeated Germany’s Nele Becker (via PTF 2:0) in the Round of 64, before losing to the Czech Republic’s Petra Stolbova (via PTF 2:0). Rose Abela was defeated by Sweden’s Nora Hogfeldt (via PTF 2:0) in the Round of 64.
Rebecca Murray made the Round of 16 with an impressive victory over Ukraine’s Uliana Kuts, before losing a tight battle with eventual bronze medallist, Leslie Soltero (Mexico).
Emily Stellino was defeated in the Round of 32 by the Czech Republic’s Iveta Jirankova (via PTF 2:0).
Reba Stewart was eliminated in the Round of 16 after a competitive bout with eventual silver medallist Lei Xu (China) (via PTF 2:0).
Day 2 – Cadets and Juniors
Cadet Boys -45kg
Eyad Sakr was defeated in the Round of 16 by Poland’s Jakub Bocianowski (via PTF 2:0).
Cadet Girls -41kg
Trinity Hock reached the Round of 16 with a win over Poland’s Maria Tarapat (via PTF 2:0), before losing to losing to eventual bronze medallist Sofia Pernarovska (Germany).
Junior Boys -48kg
Lukas Ingram was defeated in the Round of 32 by Germany’s Adnan Suljovic (via PTF 2:0).
Junior Boys -51kg
Nathan Chau was defeated in the Round of 32 by Belgium’s Charles Louis Guiot (via PTF 2:0).
Junior Boys -55kg
Phoenix Bobrowski reached the Round of 16 with wins over Steve Mahesh (Ireland) and Alexander Reiner (Germany), before losing a tough contest to bronze medallist Anthony Dore (France). Jake George defeated Poland’s Lukasz Maruszewski to reach the Round of 32, where he was also beaten by Anthony Dore. Boran Saglam was defeated in the Round of 32 by France’s Boran Saglam (via PTF 2:0), while Bradely Calleja was narrowly defeated in the Round of 64 by Cote D’Ivoire’s Emmanuel Y.K. Mangre (via PTF 2:1).
Junior Boys -63kg
Darian Djakovic defeated Poland’s Hubert Drozan (via PTF 2:0) for a place in the Round of 16, before losing to eventual bronze medallist Elion Agushi (Kosovo).
Junior Boys -70kg
Taye Ragheb was defeated in the Round of 16 by Germany’s Maximillian Spick (via PTF 2:0).
Junior Boys -78kg
Zaine Mansfield made an impressive run to the final with wins over Thibaut Clabaux (France) and Ilia Volgin (Germany). He was then defeated by eventual gold medallist Oscar Kovacic (via RSC 2:0).
Junior Girls -44kg
Yasmin Khalil was defeated in the Round of 16 by Poland’s Natasza Woskowiak (via PTF 2:0).
Junior Girls -46kg
Tiarnagh Sweeney defeated the Netherlands’ Sofia Bouassa (via PTF 2:0) en route to the Round of 16, before falling to eventual silver medallist Sara Oulad (Germany).
Junior Girls -49kg
Sofia Querubin defeated Poland’s Zuzanna Klisowska (via PTF 2:0) on her way to the Round of 16, where she lost to eventual silver medallist Mah Teninba Fofana (France).
Junior Girls -52kg
Ajsa Ramic lost a close battle against Germany’s Anastacia Margarynt (via PTF 2:1).
Junior Girls -59kg
Amarlie Evans defeated France’s Cassandra Meyeur Mourot (via PTF 2:0), before losing to eventual gold medallist Andrea Berisaj (Montenegro) in the Round of 16. Doris Xia was defeated by France’s Fatima Mendy (via PTF 2:0) in the Round of 32.
Junior Girls -68kg
Aisha Chahal was defeated in the Quarter Finals by Cote D’Ivpire’s Nouria A.R. Dje (via PTF 2:0).