Baruch Shmailov gave Israel a win today in Jerusalem ©IJF

Israel's Baruch Shmailov was a popular victor on the opening day of the International Judo Federation (IJF) World Judo Masters in Jerusalem, giving the hosts a gold medal in the year-ending competition.

It was his best World Masters result to date and his first title, topping the podium in the men's under-66 kilogram tournament.

In the semi-finals, he defeated double world bronze medallist Denis Vieru from Moldova, setting up a match against Frenchman Daikii Bouba in the final, who had toppled Sardor Nurillaev from Uzbekistan in the previous round.

Shmailov got the waza-ari early and later followed up with another from a left-handed o-soto-gari manoeuvre for the victory.

A second judoka from France made it onto the podium thanks to Walide Khyar who defeated Nurillaev for bronze; while Vieru won against the Mongolian Bashkhuu Yondonperenlei for the other.

Double European champion Shirine Boukli would give France a gold to their name after winning the women's under-48kg tournament.

Coming in as the top seed, Boukli sealed her first Masters gold with a sole waza-ari against Japan's Wakana Koga in the final.

Koga is the defending Asian champion and world silver medallist from 2021 in this category.

Losing semi-finalists Catarina Costa of Portugal and Assunta Scutto of Italy came through the bronze medal-matches victorious with wins over Kazakhstan's Abiba Abuzhakynova and Narantsetseg Ganbaatar of Mongolia respectively.

Distria Krasniqi was victorious in the women's under-52kg ©Getty Images
Distria Krasniqi was victorious in the women's under-52kg ©Getty Images

Despite moving up four kilograms from the weight she won the Olympic title in Tokyo last year, Kosovo's Distria Krasniqi had enough to defeat Britain's Chelsie Giles, the Olympic bronze medallist, in the women's under-52kg final.

Krasniqi got an early waza-ari with the o-uchi-gari, which ended up being enough to win her fourth Masters title in a row.

Hungarian Reka Pupp managed to take bronze without fighting a repechage for it, after both of her potential challengers, Amandine Buchard from France and Uzbekistan's Diyora Keldiyorova, were disqualified due to dangerous techniques in previous matches.

Italian Odette Giuffrida won against Israel's Gefen Primo for the other podium spot.

Canadian Christa Deguchi, the 2019 world champion, was crowned the 2022 Masters winner in the women's under-57kg category, having her arm raised in the golden score period after an injury to her opponent Sarah Leonie Cysique from France.

Tsukasa Yoshida from Japan and Huh Mimi of South Korea were the bronze medallists.

Finally, South Korean Lee Ha-rim defeated Ryuju Nagayama of Japan for the men's under-60kg crown, while Chinese Taipei's Yang Yung Wei and Balabay Aghayev of Azerbaijan claimed the bronze medals.