After the first session of the ITF Taekwon-Do World Championships in Wellington the home team was the leading nation, heading the medal table with two golds, two silver medals and three bronze .
The nearest rivals for New Zealand after the initial junior competition was Germany who had won two events and scored a silver in another. Argentina, who were the top nation at the last world championships in 2009 in Argentina were lying third with two gold and four bronze.
One of the star competitors for New was Auckland 17-year-old Matthew Chan who won the junior male speciality – high jumping kicks in a play-off over Poland’s Michal Wieleba. Chan who is coached by four-time world champion Carl Van Roon also won a silver medal in the Junior Male 1st Dan Individual Patterns, behind Samuel Fortin from Canada.
Another gold medal winner was 15-year-old Jason Teio from Porirua who won the junior male power category ahead of another Kiwi Hamish Duncan who lives in Blenheim.
The bronze medals came in the form of Paige Moki in the junior female individual sparring heavy-weight competition, while Ethan Parker gained bronze in the junior male 2nd dan individual patterns and Phillipa Henry came close to making the final in the junior female individual sparring mid weight. She was beaten by Merce Rosell Jimenez of Spain in an extra round in the semifinals.
Thursday will be an important day for all nations with the senior competitors taking to the floor in full individual sparring, patterns and breaking mode. Local medal hopes will be pinned on Van Roon, Carolina Dillen who is the current world champion in patterns, plus world champion power-breaker Luke Thompson from Auckland.
The sparring in particular should prove to be fierce especially if Van Roon finds himself up against his close rival Ken Edwards from Jamaica.
The first session of day two commences at 9am with the second session starting at 2pm until around 7pm.
The World Championships continues at the TSB Arena on the Wellington waterfront Thursday 10 March, then Saturday and Sunday 13 March.
Results ITF Taekwon-Do World Championships, Wellington.
New Zealand unless noted
Female Junior Sparring Light Weight ( 45kg – 50kg):
Justnya Szajuk(Poland) bt Chloe Aboud(Ireland) 2-0
Anna Kucharska(Slovenia) bt Nicole Butler(Ireland) 4-0
Szajuk bt Kucharska 3-1.
Junior Male 1st Dan Individual Patterns:
Samuel Fortin(Canada) bt Tomas Alejandro Mendez(Argentina) 3-2
Matthew Chan bt Jeremy Dijkstra(Netherlands) 3-2
Fortin bt Chan 3-2,
Junior Male 2nd Dan Individual Patterns:
Joshua Buitrago(USA) bt Ethan Parker 3-1,
Adrian Santana(USA) bt Cristobal Segura Martin(Spain) 3-2.
Buitrago bt Santana 3-2.
Junior Male 3rd Dan Individual Patterns:
Brandon Yan(USA) bt Sean O’Neill(Canada) 3-2,
Mathias Vones(Germany) bt Raphael St-Charles(Canada) 3-1,
Vones bt Yan 2-2, 3-2(extra round).
Junior Male Specialty (High Jumping Kicks)
Matthew Chan 1, Micahl Wieleba(Poland) 2, Trent Hayden(Australia), Mateusz Mroz(Poland) 3 =.
Junior Male Power Breaking:
Jason Teio 1, Hamish Duncan 2, Michal Wieleba(Poland) 3.
Female Junior Individual Sparring Heavy Weight 55-60kg:
Jaqueline Rowold(Germany) bt Paige Moki 2-2, 4-0 (extra round)
Reike Hagele(Germany) bt Camila Canut(Argentina) 3-1
Hagele bt Rowold 3-1.
Junior Female Individual Sparring Hyper-Weight
Kayla Maduk(Canada) bt Taylor Halvorson(Canada) 2-2 3-1(extra round)
Daiana Pamela Turnes(Argentina) bt Ruri Kobayakawa(USA) 3-1
Turnes bt Maduk 3-1.
Female Junior Sparring Middle (50-55kg):
Dasa Lesnik(Slovenia) bt Samantha Faddoul(Australia) 4-0
Merce Rosell Jimenez(Spain) bt Phillipa Henry 1-1, 2-2(extra round), sudden death.
Lesnik bt Jimenez 4-0.
Female Junior Individual Sparring Micro Weight:
Ailen Florencia Acosta(Argentina) bt Macarena Celeste Soledad Pitoiset(Argentina) 4-0
Urska Gazvoda(Slovenia) bt Eryka Magali Soto(Argentina) 4-0
Acosta bt Gazvoda 3-1.