Sagi Muki (ISR)

Muki is able to do sode-tsurikomi-goshi in various forms.

Israeli players are known for their big, dynamic throws and there isn’t a bigger and more dynamic thrower around than Sagi Muki of Israel.

Muki does a variety of techniques but is most well-known for his sode-tsurikomi-goshi, which is not surprising since his coach is Oren Smadga, a sode specialist. But unlike his coach, who mainly did a one-handed variation of sode, Muki has many different variations of sode.

His friendship with former World Champion Saeid Mollaei gets a lot of press coverage as Mollaei used to represent Iran (he later switched to Mongolia and is now with Azerbaijan). A match-up between the two of them has been widely anticipated for some time now but until today, it has not happened.

Muki is one of Israel’s most successful champions. His greatest achievement was winning the gold medal at the 2019 Tokyo World Championships. He is a two-time European Champion and has seven IJF World Tour golds. He also has an Olympic bronze medal from the Mixed Teams event. He failed to medal at the individual event.

Since the Olympics, Muki seems to have been in a bit of a slump. Since Tokyo, he has competed in three competitions: Paris Grand Slam, Tel Aviv Grand Slam and the European Championships in Sofia. He failed to medal in all three of these events and is currently ranked outside the Top 10 in the IJF World Rankings (at the time of writing, he is ranked 15th).

Perhaps age is catching up to him (he has just turned 30). But with a talent like Muki, there is always the possibility of a strong comeback.