Judo: Impressive Burton earns high praise

British judo head coach Patrick Roux believes Euan Burton continues to show all the qualities needed for Olympic success after the Scottish fighter secured a bronze medal at the 2010 Tokyo Grand Slam.

Burton, from Tranent, has risen to fourth in the world rankings following a string of consistent displays on the International Judo Federation circuit, which saw him claim a place on the podium at both the World and European Championships earlier this year.

Roux feels the 31-year-old is leading by example as Team GB continue their quest towards delivering medals at London 2012.

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"The highlight of Euan is his consistency - we're all very impressed with him," said the Frenchman.

"He is delivering at major events such as the World Championships, European Championships and Grand Slams.

"Also important is the style of his performances and he is continuing to improve in that respect. Euan has a good spirit and a fantastic attitude."

Roux - former European champion and world bronze medallist who competed at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul - was appointed in January 2009. He has overseen the introduction of a new centralised training centre at Dartford for the elite athletes as part of a development plan for the sport aimed to peak when the Games come to Britain - with judo targeting at least three medals.

With several youngsters showing great promise, Roux hopes 2011 will prove another key year in the progress of Team GB's Olympic hopefuls.

"Gemma Howell and Gemma Gibbons showed that they have connected at this level and are showing consistency," he said.

"Gemma took bronze at the under-23 European Championships, silver in Korea and fifth-place in Tokyo and she was unlucky not to be awarded the win against her final opponent as she was doing all the attacking.

"Gemma Gibbons fought well and she's making good progress while Karina Bryant also showed improvement. It's a very important time for us now as we enter the next phase of the Olympic programme."