Dusseldorf Grand Slam

Feb. 21 - 23, 2020


On February 21-23, 659 athletes from 115 countries traveled to Germany to compete in the Dusseldorf Grand Slam. Competition was high as the Grand Slam served as one of the toughest competitions of 2020.

Team USA came out strong on day one with Angelica Delgado (Ki-itsu-sai National Training Center/New York Athletic Club) winning the bronze medal in the women’s 52kg division. Her win at the Dusseldorf Grand Slam was a giant step forward on her journey to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan. The performance earned Delgado 500 valuable Olympic qualification points moving her up four spots on the Olympic Ranking List to #13 and directly qualified at #10.

The Dusseldorf Grand Slam also saw six USA Judo senior athletes earn valuable ranking points. 

Alisha Galles (New York Athletic Club) earned 160 points by defeating Poland’s Agata Ozdoba-Blach and Brazil’s Alexia Castilhos before falling to Cuba’s Maylin Del Tora Carvajal in the round of 16 of the women’s 63kg division. 

Following a first-round bye, Nina Cutro-Kelly (Universal Judo) finished in the round of 16, earning 160 points after defeating India’s Tulika Maan before falling to Brazil’s Beatriz Souza. 

Alex Turner (Ki-itsu-sai National Training Center/NYAC) earned 120 points in the men’s 73kg division.  Following a first-round bye, Turner defeated Costa Rica’s Julian Sancho before succumbing to eventual bronze medalist Rustam Orujov of Azerbaijan in the round of 32. 

Nick Delpopolo (Ft. Worth Judo Club) a two-time (2016 and 2012) USA Olympian in the men’s 73kg weight class, now competing in the 81kg division had a first round bye and went on to defeat Uruguay’s Alain Aprahamian before losing to Masayuki Terada of Thailand in the round of 32 earning him 120 points. 

John Jayne continued his momentum following up his two victory Paris Grand Slam two weeks ago by defeating Canada’s Zachary Burt before falling to Poland’s Piotr Kuczera in the round of 32 earning him 120 points. 

Alaa El Idrissi (El Idrissi Judo Academy) earned 120 points in the men’s 66kg division.  Following a first-round bye in Pool D, El Idrissi defeated Khaled Amhad an IJF refugee athlete before falling to Brazil’s Daniel Cargnin in the round of 32.

In the women’s 63kg division, Hannah Martin (New York Athletic Club) succumbed to eventual gold medalist Miku Tashiro of Japan in the second round following a first-round bye.

Grand Slam Düsseldorf also served as an eliminator for the Olympic Referee Selections at the on February 21-23. Of the 25 participants, no less than 18 will be in Tokyo, either as able-bodied or Paralympics. In fact, the final block for the entire event were reserved for those on the short list for selection. USA Judo Referee, Bobby Donaldson judged multiple contest in the final block for three days and he refereed premium contests in the semifinals each day.

Bobby Donaldson was also interviewed by the IJF. Read interview here: https://www.ijf.org/news/show/quick-fire-round-referees

The next stop of the IJF World Tour will be the Rabat Grand Prix 2020 in Rabat, Morocco, March 6-8.