Japan's Tokyo Olympic judo gold medalist Uta Abe won the women's 52-kilogram division at the Zagreb Grand Prix on Friday as she returned to the international scene for the first time since last summer's games.

A day after turning 22, Abe won five bouts to secure the title with the Tokyo Olympic 48-kg winner Distria Krasniqi of Kosovo, the victim in the final. Abe won by ippon through two waza-ari scored by a big outer drop and ensuing mat hold.

Uta Abe (2nd from L) of Japan poses with her judo 52-kilogram gold medal at the Zagreb Grand Prix on July 15, 2022, in Zagreb, Croatia. (Photo courtesy of the International Judo Federation)(Kyodo)

Abe had surgeries on both her shoulders last fall and was away from the sport for half a year. She returned to domestic action in April but pulled out after winning one match for safety precautions.

Her compatriot Wakana Koga also won the tournament in the women's 48-kg class, while Genki Koga came in third in the men's 60-kg.