In September 2007, a young colossus of 18 years, still unknown, won the first world title of a future long series. Fifteen years later, Teddy Riner knows that he must spare his body if he wants to push the adventure to the Paris Games in 2024. Two years from the deadline which would look like a consecration, the Guadeloupean does not want to take no risk.
At 33, the Olympic bronze medalist in Tokyo announced on Monday, September 19, his package for the next world championships, which will take place in Tashkent (Uzbekistan), from October 6 to 13. “Alas, I feared it, but the medical examinations taken today have confirmed that I will not be able to resume judo for a few weeks, which therefore excludes my participation in the next world championships in Tashkent”he wrote on social networks.
Before adding: “Two years away from the Olympics, I can’t take any risks. Appointment is made for the next world championships next May in Qatar. »
If he did not specify the nature of his injury, the PSG judoka had hurt his ankle during an internship in Morocco at the end of August. Since his second Olympic title in Rio in 2016, the judoka has suffered from many physical problems. Already crowned with ten world titles – the last in 2017 – Riner has not been chasing gold medals in this competition for a long time. He has also not competed in the world championships since his last success in Marrakech, five years ago.
In 2018, he explained to the World « the suffering of a worn body » : “I have to save my body. After more than ten years on the international scene, it is already quite worn. I no longer have a lot of cartilage, I have osteoarthritis in my shoulders and knees. I am injected with a gel containing hyaluronic acid so that I feel less pain, that I “squeal” less…”
Teddy Riner is obsessed with his latest challenge: a third individual Olympic gold medal. In Japan in 2021, he was crowned by teams with his teammates. A new coronation in Paris would make him the most successful judoka in the history of the Games, equaling his idol, the Japanese Tadahiro Nomura.