Sam Sampson recently travelled to Cyprus to take part in the 2019 Cypriot Senior National Championships. Taking on the -81kg category, Sam faced a tough category of 18 judoka, each vying for the national title.
To start the day, Sam took on the #3 ranked judoka in Cyprus, eventually taking him down to score Ippon (maximum score) and advance into the second round. Moving into the second round, Sam found himself against the #2 ranked judoka and unfortunately a reckless move handed him a loss, and pushed him into the repechage. Making his way through the repechage, Sam later found himself up against yet another member of the Cypriot team however made short work of his opponent with a highlight reel foot sweep. Finally, Sam found himself in the repechage final and had a bronze medal within reach. A tough final saw him face off against a quick footed opponent however a strong counter technique earned Sam the bronze medal at his maiden Pancyprian championships.
With this result, Sam officially qualifies for the Cypriot National Judo team and follows in the footsteps of his father and the many other judoka who have trained at the Sobell Judo Club whilst bearing the Cypriot flag; including Ioannis Kouyialis a dynamic judoka who represented Cyprus at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.