Nearly 60 national champions were crowned in Ukraine ©National Sambo Federation of Ukraine

The National Sambo Federation of Ukraine held its National Youth and Junior Sambo Cups with more than 350 people participating.

Participants came from 19 regions in the country and competed across three days in the village of Karolino-Bugaz in the Odessa region.

Kharkiv sambists won the team event in both the under-18 and under-20 age categories.

Further events are set to take place in the village later this year.

"After a forced pause due to quarantine, everyone was happy to meet again in the competition hall," said Vadim Rogach, President of the National Sambo Federation of Ukraine.

"The Youth and Junior Cup of Ukraine is the first of three tournaments that will take place in September in Karolino-Bugaz.

Referees were also involved in seminars prior to the competition ©National Sambo Federation of Ukraine
Referees were also involved in seminars prior to the competition ©National Sambo Federation of Ukraine

"After that, the National Championships among adults and cadets will be organised.

"All competitions have qualifying status for the World and European Championships.

"Even in this difficult time, the organisation of the tournament was at the highest level, for which I thank the team of the Odessa Sambo Federation, headed by Alexander Azelenko and Vakhid Sabirov."

A seminar for judges was held prior to the competition and was dedicated to the changes to international sambo rules.

More than 40 specialists from 20 regions in the country participated in theory and practical classes.

"Despite the difficulties associated with quarantine, all the participants who applied for the seminar attended it," said Anatoly Kantur, the chairman of the national governing body's referees board.

"I think that we did a good job for three days – both in the classroom and on the mat.

"There were a lot of young referees who participated in the seminar. 

"We must always think about the continuity of generations; and it is very good that there are athletes who have won and continue to win medals at prestigious international competitions for Ukraine among them."

A total of 58 categories were competed in the youth and junior tournaments.

Sambo has seen some return to action recently, with the Belarus National Championships scheduled for this month. 

South Korea is looking to host their championship in separate events spread out across the end of the year.