On the weekend of 8th/9th March, Southampton University Taekwondo (SUTKD) took a 47 strong team to the annual British Student Taekwondo Federation National Championships, held at the City Academy Sport Centre in Bristol.
It was a long, gruelling, challenging two days which saw many universities from all over the country compete for the title of student national champions. Saturday morning was the ITF style of competition, and although we mainly do WTF (the official style which determines team champions, to be contested Saturday afternoon and Sunday), 12 members of our team competed and came 2nd overall! An extraordinary feat for only 12 competitors, competing against uni’s with 20+.
On Saturday afternoon, our conquest began with the team securing 4 medals in the forms competition, giving us a great start heading into the main sparring competition on Sunday. This was it. SUTKD fighters were up from quite early on, and all day we fought with everything we had. Many fights were won by a single point, and it was these tight victories, where our fighters gave that extra 10%, which added up to be very important at the end. After a long, tough day, all the medals and points were accumulated and counted. SUTKD national champions for the 5th consecutive year, placing us in the record books as the most successful University Taekwondo club in the UK, ever.
This year, it seemed all the other universities had stepped up their game, but unfortunately for them, so did we. Every member of the team put in amazing performances. Special mention must go to Owen Middleton, competing in his first Taekwondo tournament with the club and winning a silver medal. He won 3 very tough fights, carrying through an injured foot, and narrowly lost in the final. Also, Sheena Au-Yeung, who competing in her final year at University, tallied a total of 4 medals (2 gold, 2 bronze) over the ITF and WTF competition.
Overall results: SUTKD National Champions, 10 GOLD medals, 6 SILVER medals, 7 BRONZE medals.
Report courtesy of Jay Patel.