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Anton Geesink
Born Antonius Johannes Geesink
April 6, 1934(1934-04-06)
Utrecht, Netherlands
Residence Utrecht, Netherlands
Style Judo
Rank jūdan (10th dan - recognised by the IJF, but not formally by the Kodokan)
Medal record
Anton Geesink
Competitor for the  Netherlands
Men's Judo
Olympic Games
Gold 1964 Tokyo Open
World Championships
Gold 1961 Paris Open
Gold 1965 Rio de Janeiro +80 kg
Bronze 1956 Tokyo Open

Antonius "Anton" Johannes Geesink (born April 6, 1934) is a Dutch 10th dan judoka. He is a three-time World Judo Champion (1961, 1964 and 1965) and Olympic Gold Medalist (1964). He was 6'6" (1.98m) tall and at one time weighted 320 pounds (145 kg). He was born in Utrecht.


Judo career

Geesink first participated in the European Championships in 1951, and placed second in his category. The following year, he won his first European title. Through to 1967, twenty more European titles followed.

At the 1961 World Championships, Geesink became World Champion in the open class, defeating the Japanese, who had won all World Championship titles up to that point.

Judo debuted as an official sport at the 1964 Summer Olympics, which were held in the sport's home country, Japan. Although Japan dominated three of the four weight divisions (light, middle and heavy), Anton Geesink won the final of the open weight division, defeating Akio Kaminaga in front of his home crowd.

After winning the 1965 World Championships and a last European title in 1967, Geesink quit competitive judo.

Anton Geesink is the only living 10th dan grade kodansha recognized by the IJF but not by Kodokan. There are three living 10th dan kodanshas recognized by Kodokan: Toshiro Daigo, Ichiro Abe and Yoshimi Osawa.

Professional wrestling career

In October 1973, All Japan Pro-Wrestling owner Giant Baba recruited Anton Geesink to join AJPW. Baba sent him to Amarillo, TX and Dory Funk Jr. and Terry Funk trained him for a month. He worked for All Japan from 1973 to 1978, as a popular part-timer.

Notable opponents included Bruno Sammartino, Gorilla Monsoon, Dick Murdoch, Dory Funk Jr., Bob Remus (Sgt. Slaughter), Jumbo Tsuruta.

International Olympic Committee work

In 1987, he became a member of the board of the Dutch National Olympic Committee, and a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Geesink was among the IOC members suspected of accepting bribes during the scandal surrounding the election of Salt Lake City as the host of the 2002 Winter Olympics. The IOC considered the situation not serious enough for expulsion, and issued a warning to Geesink.


Geesink was awarded the Order of the Sacred Treasure by the Japanese government.[1]

His home town of Utrecht has a street named after him — the street that he lives in.

External links


  1. ^ L'Harmattan web site (in French), Order with gold rays
Preceded by
Klaas Boot
Dutch Sportsman of the Year
Succeeded by
Gerrit Schulte
Preceded by
Peter Post
Dutch Sportsman of the Year
1964 to 1965
Succeeded by
Ard Schenk / Kees Verkerk


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