Papua New Guinea judo representative Raymond Ovinou lasted just 43 seconds in his 66kg bout against Canadian Antoine Bouchard this morning. Ovinou, featuring in his second Olympic Games, was outclassed by his more experienced opponent.
At the 2012 Summer Olympics he competed in the men’s 66kg division, and was defeated in the second round. At the 2014 Commonwealth Games, he reached the last 16.
Ovinou was apologetic in defeat feeling he had let the nation down, but considering his opponent went on to fight for the Bronze medal, a positive result was always going to be a tough ask.
Bouchard himself had entered Rio off the back of stellar performances in 2015, as well as earning victories in both the IJF World Championships and the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
He will continue on to the elimination round of 32.
As a result, Ovinou is now ranked 33rd and is officially out of the Rio Olympics.
The PNG Olympic Committee has said that the man from Gereka and PNG’s first judoka to compete at the Olympics will continue to be a mentor for other PNG judo athletes, and work with the PNG Judo Federation to run their coaching and development programs.