Not everyone is able to qualify for the Olympic Games directly, but the Olympic Games are the place to show that Judo is a world-wide game. It was recently revealed that Diassonema Mucungui would be heading to the Tokyo Olympic Games to represent her country Angola.
Prior to receiving her invitation to the games, Mucungui had a points total of 1657 points which would have not been enough to qualify. However, she has been included due to the international quota which aims to diversify the Olympics with more countries.
Diassonema Mucungui will be the only female Judoka from Africa, alongside Ivorian Dabonne Zouleiha Abzetta who was also included in the quota. Their ranks are 37 and 38 respectively.
Competing in the -57KG division, Mucungui will be against tough opposition and is considered a bit of a wild card in that sense. With this in mind, realistically she is not expected to achieve any medals, and doing so would be a huge achievement. Historically, Angola has never won a medal in Judo at the Olympics, so history is not on her side.
Nonetheless, anything can happen and Mucungui recently won gold at the African Judo Championships in 2020 in Antananarivo in Madagascar. The year previously, she achieved bronze in the African Games in Rabat and in terms of rankings, is Angola’s highest placed competitor this year.
This Olympics will be a special time for Judo, seeing as it returns to its historic birthplace. Judo was founded by Kano Jigoro who created the martial art back in 1882. By 1964, it had become an official Olympic sport.