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Majlinda Kelmendi (Albanian pronunciation: [majˈlinda kɛlˈmɛndi]; born 9 May 1991)[2][3] is a Kosovar-Albanian[4][5] judoka and a double world champion with two European titles.[6] She competes in the 52 kg weight category. She competes for Galatasaray Judo in Istanbul. In 2014, Majlinda topped the IJF Women's Prestige World Ranking List[7][8] and was decorated by President of Kosovo, Atifete Jahjaga with the "Presidential Medal of Merit".[9] On 7 August 2016, she became the first Kosovar athlete to win a medal at the Olympic Games when she claimed gold in the women's -52 kg category in Rio de Janeiro.[10] She represented Albania in 2012 but failed to win a medal.[11]

Contents

1 Career 2 National team representation 3 Medals record 4 See also 5 Notes and references

5.1 Notes 5.2 References

Career[edit] Born in Peć, Kelmendi began practicing the art of judo in 1999, in her hometown. Her current[citation needed] coach is Driton Kuka.[12][13] In 2009, Kelmendi won the gold medal at the World Junior Championships in Paris.[14] In 2010, she came 5th at the World Junior Championships in Morocco[15] and finished 9th in the 52 kg category at the 2010 World Judo Championships in Tokyo, Japan.[16] She defeated Jaana Sundberg in the first round of the 2012 Olympics but then lost to Christianne Legentil in the second round.[17] At the 2013 World Judo Championships, Kelmendi gave Kosovo its first ever judo world title as she beat Brazil's Erika Miranda in the −52 kg gold medal match in Rio de Janeiro. The 22-year-old – the first Kosovar judoka to win a medal at the championships since Kosovo's declaration of independence in 2008 – was not a shock winner as she came to Rio de Janeiro ranked number one in her category having won the prestigious Masters event.[citation needed] Kelmendi retained the world title in 2014. She only lost twice in 2013 and had beaten everyone of note in her division.[18] She did not defend her title the following year due to injury. In February 2016, she won the gold medal at Grand Slam Paris, making her third consecutive title after winning in 2014 and 2015.[19] Two months later, she earned a gold medal at the 2016 European Judo Championships in Kazan, Russia.[20] At the 2016 Summer Olympics she became the first ever Kosovan athlete to win a gold medal, or any medal at all, for Kosovo at an Olympic Games.[10] Controversy arose when reports emerged that she had declined to take an unscheduled doping control test in June in France; her trainer insists she is clean, and that she refused due to the tester having no authorisation from WADA.[21] National team representation[edit] Due to the resistance of International Olympic Committee and the United Nations, Kelmendi was unable to represent Kosovo at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London and instead chose to represent Albania, as the vast majority of Kosovars are ethnic Albanians.[22] In October 2014, the International Olympic Committee provisionally recognised the Olympic Committee of Kosovo and gave it full membership on 9 December 2014.[23][24] Kosovo participated at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the country's first appearance at an Olympic event.[25] Kelmendi was Kosovo's flag bearer during the Parade of Nations of the opening ceremony in Rio.[26] Her gold medal in those games was Kosovo’s first ever Olympic medal. She is also a citizen of Albania and has an Albanian passport.[4] Medals record[edit] Source:[27]

2009 03 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Prague 2010 02 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Sofia 01 ! European Cup − 52 kg, Sarajevo 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Tunis 03 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Tallinn 2011 02 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Sofia 02 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Düsseldorf 03 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Lisbon 01 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Rome 01 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Minsk 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Abu Dhabi 03 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Amsterdam 2012 01 ! European Cup − 52 kg, Prague 02 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Rome 01 ! World Cup − 52 kg, Istanbul 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Abu Dhabi 2013 02 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Paris 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Düsseldorf 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Samsun 03 ! European Championships − 52 kg, Budapest 01 ! IJF World Masters − 52 kg, Tyumen 01 ! World Championships − 52 kg, Rio de Janeiro 2014 01 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Paris 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Samsun 01 ! European Championships − 52 kg, Montpellier 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Budapest 01 ! World Championships − 52 kg, Chelyabinsk 01 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Abu Dhabi 2015 01 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Paris 03 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Abu Dhabi 2016 01 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Paris 01 ! European Championships − 52kg, Kazan 01 ! Grand Prix − 52 kg, Budapest 01 ! Olympic Games − 52 kg, Rio de Janeiro 2017 01 ! Grand Slam − 52 kg, Paris 01 ! European Championships − 52kg, Warsaw

See also[edit]

Sport in Kosovo

Notes and references[edit] Notes[edit]

a. ^ Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the Brussels Agreement. Kosovo has received formal recognition as an independent state from 113 out of 193 United Nations member states.

References[edit]

^ "Judo Inside".  ^ "Kosovo: Majlinda, the judo star". BalcaniCaucaso. Retrieved 28 August 2013.  ^ "The Olympics Interview: Majlinda Kelmendi". FP. Retrieved 28 August 2013.  ^ a b "London 2012: Judoka's Kosovo Olympic bid turned down". Retrieved 8 August 2016.  ^ "Majlinda Kelmendi". BBC. Retrieved 22 April 2013.  ^ "Kosovo Albanian judoka Majlinda Kelmendi wins the European Judo Championships 2016". Retrieved 7 August 2016.  ^ "Kelmendi and Tchrikishvili crowned IJF Prestige World Ranking List winners". International Judo Federation. Archived from the original on 9 August 2016. Retrieved 8 August 2016.  ^ "Vizer shpall Majlindën më të mirën në botë". Telegrafi.com. Retrieved 15 December 2014.  ^ "Majlinda Kelmendi dekorohet me Medaljen Presidenciale të Meritave". Telegrafi. Retrieved 24 December 2014.  ^ a b MacPhail, Cameron (7 August 2016). "Majlinda Kelmendi makes history with victory in women's judo as Kosovo wins first ever gold medal". rio2016.com. Rio 2016. Archived from the original on 8 August 2016. Retrieved 7 August 2016.  ^ "BBC Sport – London 2012 Olympics – Majlinda Kelmendi : Albania, Judo". Retrieved 8 August 2016.  ^ Browne, Luke. "The Olympics Interview: Majlinda Kelmendi". Financial Times. Retrieved 27 February 2013.  ^ Eades, David (21 July 2012). "Politics bears down on 2012 hopeful Majlinda Kelmendi". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 July 2013.  ^ Mark Lowe (17 September 2010). "Politics bears down on 2012 hopeful Majlinda Kelmendi". BBC Sport News. Retrieved 24 November 2010.  ^ "IJF World Championship Juniors 2010 – 52kg category results" (PDF). International Judo Federation. Retrieved 17 February 2013.  ^ "World Championships 2010 – 52kg category results" (PDF). IJF website. International Judo Federation. Retrieved 17 February 2013.  ^ "London 2012: 48-52kg halflightweight women – Olympic Judo". Olympic.org. Retrieved 8 August 2016.  ^ T.P. Grant (26 August 2014). "2014 World Judo Championships Day 2: Men's −60kg and Women's". Bloody Elbow.  ^ "JudoInside – News – Majlinda Kelmendi claims third title in Paris".  ^ "IJF live results".  ^ "Kosovo's First Ever Olympic Medalist on Her 'Great Moment'". Time.  ^ Jackson, Jamie (29 July 2012). "London 2012: Judo's Majlinda Kelmendi still fighting for recognition". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 February 2013.  ^ Karolos Grohmann (23 October 2014). "Olympics: IOC has no concerns over Kosovo recognition". Reuters.  ^ "Kosovo to compete at Rio 2016 Olympics after recognition from IOC", Associated Press, 9 December 2014. ^ "Kosovo given go-ahead by IOC to take part in 2016 Olympics". the Guardian.  ^ "Majlinda Kelmendi carries the flag of Kosovo at Rio 2016". 100Judo.com. Retrieved 9 December 2014.  ^ "Majlinda Kelmendi, Judoka, JudoInside". Retrieved 8 August 2016. 

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Olympic Champions in Judo - Women's Half Lightweight

1992:  Almudena Muñoz (ESP) 1996:  Marie-Claire Restoux (FRA) 2000:  Legna Verdecia (CUB) 2004:  Xian Dongmei (CHN) 2008:  Xian Dongmei (CHN) 2012:  An Kum-ae (PRK) 2016:  Majlinda K

.