A VETERAN judo fighter who refuses to retire before being crowned champion of the World has been left smarting after winning European bronze.

Stan Cantrill, from Hereford, who turns 72 years old this month, suffered a semi-final defeat in the EJU European Veterans Judo Championships in Zagreb Croatia last month to eventual winner Daniel Bongard, from Switzerland.

After winning his opening fight Cantrill met arch rival Bongard and despite appearing to be on top in the bout was thrown to the floor and beaten.

Cantrill was given a bronze medal chance in the repechage and won his next fight before beating fellow Great Britain fighter Kenneth Jones for bronze.

"I'm disappointed to have lost to the gold medalist in the pool matches which meant I had to come through the repechage to get bronze which was a bit upsetting really," said Cantrill.

"I had a handle on the gold medalist in our bout and threw him but he dragged and held me down, that was the only contest I lost. In the bronze medal fight my adrenaline was going at 100 miles per hour and he came forward so I threw him which was a great relief."

Cantrill seeks revenge on Bongard in the IJF World Veterans Championships which take place in Sardinia in September

"I want to win the World Championships and I got silver last year but Bongard is like my bogey opponent," added Cantrill.

"I know he fights left handed but I'm able to counter against that and I did manage to throw him. So Plan A worked but Plan B didn't work. I won the worlds when it was the World Masters but I haven't won it under the IJF, so I'm determined to do that.

"It's all going to plan and this was just a hiccup."

Cantrill who trains at Hereford Leisure Centre through the Sport Wales programme started competing in judo from the age of eight years old before stopping to complete coaching awards.

In 1998 Catrill came back into competition for the Worlds Masters competition.

He has also won the Europeans twice and obtained various medals along the way.