London: Saudi Arabia’s first woman to take part in the Olympics lost her debut match of +78kg judo category today.
Wojdan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shahrkhani was easily defeated by opponent Melissa Mojica, ranked 24th judo fighter in the world. The fight only lasted 82 seconds.
She is a blue belt holder in Japanese art but wore black belt in the match. She has been training for two years under her father’s guidance who is an international referee.
Throughout the game, Shahrkhani was on a defensive mode and she did not try to attack Mojica once.
Shahrkhani’s participation in the game was doubtful as initially she was not allowed to fight in a hijab but then she got permission, to fight in a specially designed cap-type hijab, from International Judo Federation, Saudi Olympic Committee and International Olympic Committee.
It is for the first time that female athletes are participating in Olympics from Saudi Arabia.