ITF Taekwon-Do New Zealand is thrilled with the confirmation that it’s sport is nominated in three categories of the 2017 Halberg Awards which are decided in February next year.
The sport has continued its growth around the country and has established itself as the premier martial art in New Zealand with a stable structure and growing base with 76 clubs nationwide.
The New Zealand International Taekwon-Do Team is in the Team category of the Halbergs, after they finished as second overall nation at the 2017 World Cup in Dublin, Ireland just a few medals behind the winners from the home nation. The New Zealanders finished with eight gold, six silver and 13 bronze medals from their 58 athletes who were up against 49 nations and over a 1000 junior and senior competitors.
The team also received a special award at the ITF World Champs for conduct and sportsmanship.
Other top nominations in the Halberg Teams category include Team New Zealand, the Black Ferns, Black Sox and many other high quality nominations.
Roisin Giles from the Warrior club in Auckland is nominated in the Sportswoman category.
Giles won the Individual Female Pattern 2nd Dan Senior Gold Medal at the ITF World Championships in Ireland in October this year and she was a valuable part of the New Zealand team which finished second overall.
Other names in the Sportswoman category include Canoe Racings Lisa Carrington and Portia Woodman from rugby.
Nominated in the Emerging Talent category is Auckland teenager, Bianca Koper.
Koper, 17 from the Hart Taekwon-Do club in Henderson was a gold medallist in the over 65kg junior female sparring, earning the title of junior sparring world champion. She was also a silver medal as a member of the junior female team specialty and was a team member of the second place overall New Zealand team.
Domestically Koper won two gold medals and one bronze at the national championships in Auckland in the middle of the year.
“We are over-the-moon having ITF Takekwon-Do represented in the nomination for the Halberg’s. It truly shows how the sport is growing and that we have an organised and structured sport which is going forward into the future,” said ITF Taekwon-Do NZ CEO, Mike Thompson.
The Halberg Awards judges now review all the nominations to decide a shortlist of finalists which will be announced in January 2017.