Brazil judo team among favorites for Beijing Olympic Games

Brazil judo team among favorites for Beijing Olympic Games 2008-08-02 08:25:27

PrintSpecial report: 2008 Olympic Games     

RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug. 1 (Xinhua) — Brazil national judo team is among the favorites to win a gold medal in the upcoming Beijing Olympic Games.     The country will send 13 judokas to Beijing, one more than that for the Athens Games where Brazil won two bronze medals.     

Brazil judo head coach Ney Wilson said on Friday that many things changed since the last Games. There has been a higher investment in the team structure and in the athletes’ preparation, with several training seasons abroad.     

"The Olympic Games are like that. You have to invest to reach a goal. The results may not be the expected, but at least you start the Games in the same level as the other countries," Wilson said.     One of the major changes in the structure of Brazil judo team was the hiring of nutritionist Roberta Lima in 2003.    

With a specialized professional to take care of their weight control, athletes can focus only on the training. Lima will accompany the team to the Olympic Games for the first time in Beijing.     

Brazil’s performance in the last international competitions shows how more investment makes a difference in sports.     In the Pan-American Games last year, the country won 13 medals, four of them gold. In the last World Judo Championships in 2007, Brazil won four medals, three of them gold.     Even before that, Brazil had a tradition in judo in the Olympic Games. The country has conquered at least one medal in judo in every Games since Los Angeles-1984.     Brazil judo team will arrive in Beijing on August 5. The judo competitions start in August 9.



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