‘Osama was too tall to be a good judo player’

London, May 8: Taiwanese martial arts coach Jimmy Wu, gave lessons to Osama bin Laden when he was a university student in Saudi Arabia, has said that the killed al Qaeda chief was too tall to be a good judo player.

Bin Laden took up judo under the tutelage of Wu, who was the Saudi national coach from 1981 to 1991.

Wu has released pictures of himself alongside a tall, thin, studious-looking young man wearing a judo suit. The photos have not been verified but bear a passing resemblance to bin Laden when he was young.

Wu said that bin Laden, who stood 6ft 4ins, was too tall to be a good judo player, and advised him against the sport. However, he accepted him for instruction after bin Laden insisted, The Te;egraph reports.

“I didn’t know the name bin Laden then. After 9/11, I was invited to a seminar, and some of my former students there said, ‘Oh Jimmy, Osama, now he’s our hero’. I was surprised and I looked for some pictures and I said, ‘Oh this guy,’ and I started to have some memory of him,” Wu said.

Bin Laden attended judo lessons two to three times a week, but Wu never saw him again after 1984. (ANI)