Gamba to help Russian female judokas equal men’s success
A group of local coaches will be assisting Gamba in his work, with Dmitry Morozov to be working with male athletes and Konstantin Filosofenko executing the same responsibilities with the female team.
The Russian men dominated the judo events in London 2012 under the Italian, winning three gold medals, a silver and a bronze to make a comeback to the Olympic podium after 32 years of absence.
Meanwhile, the female squad returned from the British capital without a single medal in the bag, which saw coach Anatoly Rakhlin lose his job.
Gamba needed just three years to propel the country’s men to the top of world judo and the sport’s officials now expect a significant improvement in the results of the women’s team as well.
“Just two weeks ago Russia’s President Vladimir Putin asked me to take care of women as well,” the Italian told R-Sport news agency. “I think that in Rio 2016 the Russian female judokas will be able to win three medals and men will grab five. We can’t afford a setback in our results.”
Ezio Gamba and Vladimir Putin (RIA Novosti/Alexsey Druginyn)