Coming off her win at the 2021 World Judo Championships, Germany’s Anna-Maria Wagner is full steam ahead on the Olympic Games. Wagner looks to keep her momentum going into The Games and come home with the highest honor in the sport: Olympic gold.
Wagner has been involved with the sport for some time now. From the first day she tried judo, she fell in love and signed up at a gym immediately.
“I attended a judo group in 2nd grade. I had so much fun that I signed up for the club straight away.”
Outside of judo, Anna-Maria Wagner is just a regular person. Behind the Olympic preparations and training, she likes to spend time with her friend amongst other things.
“I like to do something with friends. Also cooking, playing games, watching movies, etc. I’m a very sociable person.”
Often times, judo is paired with other combat sports. But Wagner doesn’t really dabble. “No, there is no time for that,” she says when asked if she did any Jiu Jitsu as well.
Anna-Maria Wagner And The 2021 Tokyo Olympics
An athlete punching their ticket to the Olympic Games is a dream come true for hundreds of athletes every cycle. For Anna-Maria Wagner, making the German Olympic team was just that and more.
“It was unbelievable,” says Wagner describing the feeling of punching her Olympic ticket. “I couldn’t even realize it at first. A great goal has been achieved.”
Going into The Games, Wagner feels ready. She believes all the hard work put in over the years since grade two has brought her to where she is today and the spot on the team is much deserved. “I feel like an Olympian. I fought hard for the ticket.”
And perhaps even more of a dream come true over making the Olympic team is coming home with the gold medal. Standing on top of the podium signifying that you are, in fact, the best is one of the most sought after highs in sport. While it would be amazing to win the gold medal, Anna-Maria Wagner says she will still be the same judoka she was before the games.
“It would be a great childhood dream to come home with the gold medal. But nothing would change for me after that.”
Unfortunately, her stay in Japan will be brief. With the new COVID-19 protocols in place in Japan, teams are not being allowed to stay and explore the sprawling city of Tokyo. “We have to leave immediately after the competition,” says Anna-Maria Wagner.
While the Olympics are approaching rapidly, Anna-Maria Wagner has already cemented herself as a legendary judoka in German culture, gold medal or not. But, as a competitor, that won’t be enough and she will be gunning for the gold. But, having beat the number one female judoka in the world, Madeleine Malonga of France, to win her World gold, she will have stiff competition going into the Games.