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Romane Dicko, judoka: “When I have moments of doubt, I look at my medal and I tell myself that I can do it”

At 23, Romane Dicko’s prize list begins to thicken. Olympic bronze medalist in Tokyo in 2021 and triple European champion, the specialist in the + 78 kg category won her first world title on October 12, in Tashkent. In the absence of Teddy Riner and Clarisse Agbegnenou, she asserted herself in Uzbekistan as the boss of the France team.

What personal assessment do you make of this year 2022?

It is a very good year. It was the year after the Olympic Games (OG), so a special and decisive year. I came back victorious from the two major championships: European and World – my first world medal.

When you enter the competition at these Worlds, the Blues had no medals. Was it extra pressure?

No, because it would have been negative if I had put too much pressure on myself about it. I tried not to let the general atmosphere get to me, for my individual competition. I spoke to the right people, I messaged my cousin Teddy Tamgho for some advice. I also asked Teddy Riner: “Teddy, how do you do when it’s your last day and it doesn’t go well before?” » To have the opinion of the big brothers so that they can help me. They told me : “Romane, it’s your day. It doesn’t matter what happened before. It’s your competition and you have to leave everything else aside. »

Read also: Romane Dicko, gold medal at the world judo and new boss of the Blues

In Tashkent, you imposed yourself as the boss of the France team. Is it a natural role?

It’s not a suit I put on in the morning. I’m just myself. For this competition, it happened naturally.

At the Olympics, you ended in tears, with emotion but also with disappointment. What has this bronze medal changed since then?

At each competition, I arrive as an Olympic medalist. It counts for my opponents, and also for me. When I have moments of doubt, I look at my medal and tell myself that I can do it. When you come back medalist of the Games at 21, you say to yourself that it is possible. I wanted to show at the Worlds that I could do even more: go to the final and win it.

All disciplines combined, which sportsman or sportsman has marked you the most in 2022?

I would say Mathilde Gros [cyclisme sur piste]. Besides, she’s my girlfriend. We’re the same age, similar careers. We won the European championships in 2018, the Worlds this year. She broke through very early. She passed by in Tokyo, it hurt my heart. I hope we will win gold together in Paris in two years.

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