Arsenal fan Jamal Petgrave delivered Commonwealth Games judo gold for England and then admitted he would love to parade the medal at the Emirates Stadium.
Petgrave went into overtime to produce a ‘Golden Score’ victory over Mauritius judoka Remi Feuillet before his thoughts quickly turned to the forthcoming Premier League campaign.
“I’m looking forward to the new season and the documentary ‘All or Nothing’,” Petgrave said after his thrilling Coventry Arena victory in the men’s -90kg division.
“I hope to go to more games and I’d love to show the medal at the stadium.”
Petgrave hails from Carshalton in Surrey but was effectively competing on home turf.
The 25-year-old studied sports management at Coventry University and was able to count on support from his alma mater as well as family and friends.
He said: “I know all about this arena and to win my first major championship here is so special.
“I hadn’t fought him before and I had to work him out, his strengths and weaknesses.
“Coming into Golden Score I could see him wavering. He was getting tired and I had to take the opportunity when it came.”
England won gold again in the women’s -78kg as Emma Reid beat her “idol” Natalie Powell 1-0 to deprive the Welsh judoka of a second Commonwealth title.
Powell – the first British judoka to be ranked world number one after the introduction of an official ranking list – was defending the title she won at Glasgow 2014 as judo was not on the Gold Coast Games schedule four years ago.
“I hadn’t fought her since I was 16 as we keep missing each other in tournaments as we’re both seeded,” said Royston product Reid, 27, who has battled back from elbow surgery after tearing the ligament off the bone.
“She’s always been an idol of mine, someone I’ve always looked up to.
“We’re on the same level now, but to actually beat her is amazing.”
Reid had collected two yellow cards and a third would have spelled disaster for her gold-medal ambitions.
She said: “I was worried because there was a minute left and it puts you under a lot of pressure.
“I just had to be strong and defend her grip.”
Scotland’s Sarah Adlington emulated her 2014 victory in the women’s +78 category in dramatic fashion.
Adlington was trailing 1-0 to India’s Tulika Maan before producing a late match-deciding Ippon.
She said: “I didn’t really realise what I’d done in Glasgow, and I found it harder this time because I knew what being Commonwealth champion actually meant.
“Anything other than gold would have felt like a disaster. It’s just great to win again and create a bit of history for Scottish judo.”
English pair Rhys Thompson and Harry Lovell-Hewitt both made it into the -100kg bronze medal match.
Scotland’s Rachel Tytler also claimed a women’s -78kg bronze.
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