Team ARU – Taekwondo Report

BSTF Autumn Championships and LUSL 2018

Written for Team ARU by Jessica Marie Baloso

Results: x4 Gold, x9 Silver, x5 Bronze

A very early start for the team driving to the Jean Brown Indoor Arena in Ilford. We eagerly waited for the weigh-ins to start. A number of universities had also started arriving and some students had been exercising to burn off any excess weight to ensure they met their weight requirement. Other competitors were also practicing for the first set of competitions known as Poomsae, which is a distinct pattern of attack and defence actions.

The world weights division for sparring began around noon and Team ARU athletes were warming up, stretching, and practicing kicks before their fights. There were some issues with more than one of the team members’ matches happening at the same time. Therefore, those who were not yet competing were split all over the place, supporting as many of the team members as possible. The coaches too were doing an incredible job of managing multiple members of the team, one after the other as everyone’s matches were close together.

Every single member of the club performed very well and scoring a number of points and all at advancing the semi-finals as a minimum. A valid kick to the trunk is two points but four if it is a turning kick, and a kick to the head is three, but five if it is a turning kick.

After a lunch break to rejuvenate the athletes, the rest of the matches for the first session continued and soon came to end, and the Olympic weights division followed. Despite losing some matches, the team had a 100% medal rate and were able to take home 18 medals. The full results were:

– Maria Michael: x2 Silver, Bronze
– Jessica Marie Baloso: x2 Silver
– Lidia Iazzolino: x2 Gold
– Piyush Dattatray Dixit: Bronze
– Miranda Ventrella: Bronze
– William Moore: Gold
– George Dennis: Bronze
– Abdul Khan: Silver
– Muhammad Shoaib Shahid: x2 Silver
– Alexina Oladipupo: Gold, Silver
– Neuza Nunes-Cossa: Silver, Bronze

The Taekwondo club has improved greatly over a short period of time, from the number of members signing up, down to the progression of the hard-working individuals. The new committee members have been actively involved with their members of the group and supporting one another through running Mondays’ training sessions, as well as promoting the club with a new Instagram page being set up. The club has also gained an extra training session at a new facility at North Cambridge Academy.

A massive thank you to Barbora Hodorova for volunteering as corner and Poomsae judge, Kian Ziari, Shoaib Shahid, and Piyush Dixit for doing a wonderful job of coaching the team! Next stop: Student Nationals!