[By NBC-1TV H. J Yook]BURNABY, Canada (Nov. 16, 2016) – Gold medals went to Iran and Vietnam in the female categories, while Korea won both golds up for grabs in the male divisions on Day 1 of the 2016 WTF World Taekwondo Junior Championships.
The championships, which WTF President Chungwon Choue called “a road map to Tokyo 2020” features athletes aged 15-17. Burnaby’s Bill Copeland Sports Centre was full to the bursting point, and with many nations fielding vocal, 20-person teams, the event rocked to a noisy aural backdrop.
With 846 competitors and 458 officials registered, representing 102 countries, Burnaby 2016 is the biggest World Juniors ever.
On the first day of the five-day competition, the lightest weight divisions were contested, with medals available in the Female -42kg, Female -44kg, Male -45kg and Male -48kg categories.
Female -42kg The final match of the Female -42kg category saw Mobina Nejad Katesari of Iran face off against the taller Irene Laguna Perez of Spain. But it was the Iranian, unintimidated, who opened the scoring, making contact with a head kick for three points. The Spaniard returned fire,
sparking a series of lively exchanges, but the round ended 3-0. Very early in the second, the Iranian landed a second head shot to go up 6-0 - encouraged by her very vocal coach, whose shrieked instructions drowned out the crowd. Nejad Katesair fought much of the remainder of the round on the back foot, but offered her opponent an impenetrable defense, even when fighting from the perimeter of the mats. In the third, Laugna Perez went into full-on attack mode, and her coach appealed a head shot; it was rejected. The Iranian scored again,
to go 7-0 up, then her coach, too, appealed a head shot; it too was rejected. When action resumed, she connected again with a kick to the body. The match ended 8-0 to the Nejad Katesair, leaving Laguna Perez with silver. The Iranian girl has a rare combination of head-kick accuracy and fortress-like defense – surely, a star of tomorrow.
Bronzes went to Sofia Zampetti of Italy and Karina Ushakova of Russia. Female -44kg In the Female -44kg category finals, Maria Calderon of Costa Rica took on Thi Kim Ngan Ho of Vietnam. Both fighters started fast and both visited the mats in a clash, but then settled; the round ended 0-0. In the second, the taller Vietnamese girl landed a head kick, going three points up, ending the round 3-0. In the third, Calderon was desperately trying to land, but could just not get past Ho’s long and very versatile front leg, and lost another point on penalties. In the last 12 seconds, things got rough as the frustrated Calderon attacked and Ho went down outside the mats, losing two points for falling twice, and then a third time, but still ending it 5-2, taking gold and leaving Calderon with the silver.
Bronzes were won by Derya Esme of Turkey and Abigail Faye Valdez of the Philippines Male -45kg n the male -45kg category, Cheng Chun Chang of Chinese Taipei – who had impressed the taekwondo punditry earlier in the day by handily beating a succession of taller opponents with a fearless, attacking style – took on Jun-seo Bae of Korea. Round 1 was gently paced, with both lads feeling out the distance, Bae kicking more, Chang using footwork to stay out of trouble. It ended 0-0. In Round 2, Chang raised his game, but it was the Korean who lit up the scoreboard, winning three points with a fast and perfectly aimed combination of 1-2-3 body kicks. The round ended 3-0 to Bae. In the final round, Bae had found the range, going four, then five points up. Chang tried a series of high spinning kicks, but was unable to land. The match ended 5-0 – a very skillful display by the Korean, giving him gold and leaving Chang with the silver.
Bronzes were shared by Ayaz Ganbarli of Azerbaijan and Yutthaya Khongkraphan of Thailand. Male -48kg In the male -48kg category, Jae-hee Mok of Korea did battle with Saran Tangchatkaew of Thailand in what was arguably the most spectacular match of the evening. In Round 1, Mok scored to the body almost immediately, going one point up and igniting cheers from his teammates. But the Thai shot back with a fierce series of body shots and the tempo rose, both lads firing kicks with real venom. The Korean went two up, then appeared to land with a face kick. His coach appealed and it was rewarded. Tangchatkaew fell twice and the round ended 6-0 to Mok. Round 2
saw more action with ax kicks, spinning back kicks and punches flying fast and furious from both fighters, but with no score from either. In the third, Bae went up to nine after firing a body punch-head kick combo, while his constant movement and attacks were making it almost impossible for the Thai’s target radar to lock on. With the round only half over, Bae landed a picture-perfect ax kick to Tangchatkaw’s face, ending the match 12-0 on point difference. It had been a masterly display of fast-moving, accurate taekwondo by Mok that gave him a deserved gold and Tangchatkaew the silver. Mok’s victory, following Bae’s, suggests that Korea’s taekwondo talent pipeline is positively gushing.
Georgios Ioannou of Greece and Ting Wei Tai of Chinese Taipei went home with bronzes. Opening Ceremony Prior to the finals, the opening ceremony featured an honor guard of Royal Canadian Mounted Police in full dress uniform, and was themed after the diversity and multiculturalism that defines both the city of Burnaby and the WTF. It featured a local choir, a native Canadian wolf dance troupe, Highland pipes and drums, and a drum, dance and taekwondo performance.
At the conclusion of the ceremony, Choue kicked off the “THF Challenge,” designed to raise funds for the WTF’s humanitarian initiative, the Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation, or THF. The challenge, themed “Break Boards, Change Lives” involves breaking boards, pledging donations, and then posting related videos online.
He was joined in the challenge by Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan, who won applause with a pledge of $5000, and by WTF Council Member Ali Sagirkaya, who raised laughs when he smashed a board with his (bald) head.
A THF booth has been set up in the venue so that athletes and visitors can take the challenge over the next four days. Choue also urged the taekwondo grassroots worldwide to get involved. All funds raised will go to support taekwondo programs in refugee camps.
Just prior to the award ceremony, Kukkiwon President Hyun-deuk Oh, African Taekwondo Union President General Ahmed Fouly, Asian Taekwondo Union President, Kyu-seok Lee and Pan American Taekwondo Union President Ji-ho Choi, all took the THF Challenge.
Lee impressed the crowd by asking them to nominate a technique – the technically difficult spinning back kick was chosen – and which foot they wanted him to use. He then shattered three boards with so much power that the board holder was hit by the remains. Making Lee’s feat doubly impressive is his age: He is over 70. Competition resumes tomorrow.
[By NBC-1TV H. J Yook]Athletes, perhaps better than anyone, know just how important preparation and training are to achieve success. But, this weekend it will be the preparations of the Rio 2016 Organising Committee which are the focus of attention as they host the Aquece Rio International Taekwondo Tournament – the Olympic taekwondo test event.The tournament, organized by the Rio 2016 Organizing Committee and the Brazilian Taekwondo Federation (CBTKD), will be held on 20-21 February, at the Carioca Arena 1 in the Olympic Park, Rio de Janeiro. Carioca Arena 3 will host Olympic taekwondo
[By NBC-1TV H. J Yook]Spain's Eva Calvo Gomez shows off her gold medal during the awarding ceremony for the women's -57kg category on the third and final day of the 2014 WTF World Taekwondo Grand Prix Series 2 at the Sport Center Daulet in Astana, Kazakhstan on Aug. 31, 2014.
[NBC-1TV 이광윤 보도국장]방한중인 누르술탄 나자르바예프(Nursultan Nazarbayev) 카자흐스탄 대통령이 11일 오후, 2박 3일간의 국빈일정을 마치고 전용기편으로 서울공항을 통해 출국했다. 나자르바예프 대통령은 10일 박근혜 대통령과 정상회담을 갖고 한-카자흐스탄 전략적 동반자관계를 평가하고 교역·투자와 에너지·자원 인프라·보건·의료 등의 분야에서 경제협력을 확대하는 방안을 심도있게 논의했다. 자원부국인 카자흐스탄은 중앙아시아에서 우리나라의 최대 투자 대상국으로 1991년 독립 이후 자발적으로 핵무기를 포기하고 중앙아시아 비핵지대화 설립을 주도하는 등 비핵화에 앞장서 오면서 북핵 문제에 대해서도 우리와 공조하고 있다. 한편 나자르바예프 대통령은 청와대 회담에 앞서 10일 오전 국립서울현충원을 참배했으며, 늦은 오후에는 연세대학교를 방문해 경영관 용재홀에서 명예철학박사 학위를 받았다.
[NBC-1TV 이광윤 보도국장]방한중인 누르술탄 나자르바예프(Nursultan Nazarbayev) 카자흐스탄 대통령이 10일 오후 연세대학교 경영관 용재홀에서 명예철학박사 학위를 받았다. 연세대는 "나자르바예프 대통령이 카자흐스탄의 경제발전과 국민 건강 및 복지 증진에 공이 크다"고 선정이유를 밝혔다. 한편 연세대는 세브란스병원과 카자흐스탄 국립대학과 의료 컨설팅 및 원격진료 체계 구축을 돕는 의료 MOU를 체결한 바 있다.