German judo athlete Martyna Trajdos has defended her coach for violently shaking and slapping her across the face before her Olympic fight in Tokyo.
Trajdos was competing against Hungarian Szofi Ozbas in the round of 32 for the women’s 63kg category on Tuesday.
As she strode towards the mat, Trajdos stopped and turned to face her coach, Claudiu Pusa. He then grabbed her shoulders and shook her back and forth before giving a fierce slap to her left and right cheek.
German judo athlete Martyna Trajdos has defended her coach for violently shaking her before her Olympic fight in Tokyo
The coach hit the athlete on each cheek before she then continued to the mat for her fight
The German then nodded and continued towards the mat for her fight.
The 32-year-old, who was European champion in 2015 and a world bronze medallist two years ago, was beaten by Ozbas – who claimed victory Waza-Ari.
The result eliminated Trajdos from the competition but the video of her pre-match ritual was picked up by cameras, leading some to be concerned for her welfare.
The 32-year-old was eliminated in the round of 32 after being beaten by Hungarian Szofi Ozbas
But Trajdos took to Instagram to defender her coach and insisted he was only doing what she had asked of him.
Alongside a video of the ritual, she wrote: ‘Looks like this was not hard enough!
‘I wish I could have made a different headline today.
‘As I already said that’s the ritual which I chose pre competition !
‘My coach is just doing what I want him to do to fire me up!’
She also posted on her Instagram story: ‘Don’t worry guys! That’s the ritual which I chose before fights. My coach is just doing what I want him to do to fire me up!
Trajdos explained in two Instagram stories that she had asked her coach to perform the ritual
‘This is what I asked my coach to do so please don’t blame him. I need this before my fights to be awake.’
Ozbas advanced to the round of 16 but was then beaten by Italian Maria Centracchio, who went on to win bronze.
French athlete Clarisse Agbegnenou picked up the gold medal while Tina Trstenjak, of Slovenia, took silver.