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JO: Romane Dicko, in the footsteps of Teddy Riner

Like her legendary elder in Beijing in 2008, the 21-year-old Frenchwoman won a bronze medal in Tokyo for her first Olympic Games.

Special envoy to Tokyo

Since her thunderous debut with a title of champion of France at the age of 17, a record of precocity in France, Romane Dicko is considered a future “Teddy Riner for women”. A comparison all the more justified that on Friday, like her compatriot in Beijing in 2008, the 21-year-old Frenchwoman won a bronze medal for her first Olympic Games. Moreover, he himself took care of reminding her after the semi-final lost by the native of Clamart against one of the legends of the heavyweight category, the Cuban Idalys Ortiz, now with four Olympic medals. , including a title in 2012. “He came to tell me that, of course, you cannot spit on an Olympic medal, that he himself started like that, that we have to re-mobilize, that it is the most important and the most difficult too”, she explained.

This did not prevent her from nourishing a certain disappointment, she who remained on 27 straight victories – including the last fifteen on ippon – arriving in Tokyo. “I really wanted to bring home an Olympic gold medal, I think I was capable of it. After, judo, it goes quickly, all you need is a sequence where you put your hands badly and that does not forgive. Even if it was not the medal I came for, I am still very happy to be on this podium, because I have come a long way. ” Indeed, in order to push the mimicry a little further with Teddy Riner, Romane Dicko also experienced her share of physical problems – either to a shoulder or to a knee -, certainly linked to the twenty or so kilos that she had to take to be able to better adapt to the competition in senior. What forced her to a year 2019 almost without competition.

Rendezvous for Paris 2024

Not ideal for preparing for the Tokyo Games. For which a certain Émilie Andéol, Olympic champion in Rio, since retired from the tatami mats, had dubbed her: “She told me, just after her title : “Next time it’s you!” It sounded crazy to me. It was a dream, sure, but it seemed so far away, so unattainable. I was hoping to have a chance to be on the mat for the Paris 2024 Games. At that point, I didn’t tell myself that, four years later, I was going to be there.. ” And yet it was. No wonder for a young woman whose rate of speech, like a machine gun, is proportional to her impatience to climb into the higher spheres of her discipline. This did not prevent him, outside the dojos, from taking mathematics courses at the Sorbonne with the aim of one day becoming an aeronautical engineer.

But that will wait since, after his bronze medal, Dicko has already made an appointment with everyone for Paris 2024. “I have my medal, it’s done, and see you in three years for the gold medal. If her body leaves her in peace and she continues to progress at lightning speed, with an impressive physique of power, the judokate of Paris SG has all the cards to make Tokyo the starting point of her future domination. . As Riner had done so well after his relative failure from Beijing. After all, it is well known, in sport, you always learn more by defeat. And, this Friday, Dicko certainly learned a lot.


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