Oleksandr Chirsky, the new commander of Ukraine's armed forces, has long been involved in the war against Russia.

Paris 2024: Ukrainian judoka Daria Philodit aims for Olympic gold for “Ukraine's youth”

“Somehow, we're used to war.” : Ukrainian judoka Daria Philodit, a double world champion at the age of 23, explained to Agence France-Presse that she wants to win Olympic gold in Paris. “not only” For her, but also for her “country” And “Youth of Ukraine”.

In 2023, Daria Philodit failed to win a third world title in Doha. In protest of Russian judo, Ukraine boycotted the competition. An injustice according to the young judoka. “All these people who are going to participate in the world championships are soldiers. It doesn't make sense”The athlete wrote on Instagram that he believed it was him “It is unacceptable to recognize soldiers from a terrorist country that kills Ukrainians every day”.

This week, during an international training session that will bring together hundreds of judokas who met at a Paris dojo, the bronze medalist at the Tokyo Games in 2021 wants today “Keep my eyes on the gold medal and concentrate fully on training” In six months.

This summer, only Russian athletes who do not actively support the war and do not have contracts with the military or national security organizations can compete under a neutral banner and if they are definitely qualified, the international has decided. Olympic Committee by the end of 2023. “I accept” If the draw decides to fight them, she says. But still “Of course, it's not the same.” to fight the Russians, “Obviously I want to win more against them.” against other nationalities. “I feel the competition is very close, so now I'm trying to focus more on my preparation”Daria Philodit, world champion at − 48 kg in 2018 and 2019, but has since moved to − 57 kg, explains.

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Compared to her former opponents at −48 kg, the tallest judoka, Daria Philodit, 1.72 meters, still makes her size an asset in her new division. But beyond that, she highlights her strong points “character” And his “soul” : “I think this is my main strength, my mentality, I think I have a champion spirit, I want to win all the matches, I want to be the best. »

Despite the war, Daria Philodit continues to live in Kiev, Ukraine. “It's not easy to practice” daily “All the people are so tired of war”She continues. “Sometimes rockets continue to fall on Kyiv. It is difficult, but somehow we are used to war and we continue to train. No one knows what will happen now. »

Daria Philodit “Always wanted to represent Ukraine before the war”. “But today, I want to win more not only for myself, but also for my country. It is very important for our people and Ukrainian youth.she says.

After February 24, 2022, when the Russian invasion of Ukraine began, the young star with half a million followers on Instagram partially exchanged her sexy publications for distressing messages. “I will never forget the explosions, the sound of the explosions, the calls from my family saying, 'It has begun', the fear and the tears.”For example he writes on March 24, 2022.

After almost two years, the candidate wants to move to Valencia, Spain to live and train. “We still have hope, show us we're still standing”Judoka says its game consists precisely of not falling.

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Surrounded by her mother and coach Svitlana Kuznetsova, mentored by her father, 2005 world medalist Gennady Philodit, the Ukrainian has a clear goal in 2024: “Hearing the Ukrainian anthem in Paris will be one of the greatest emotions”.

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