GTI Taekwon-Do Nationals 2021 - Tournament Results

Sunday the 12th September 2021 saw the return of the GTI (Global Taekwondo International) National Open Taekown-dO Tourmnament in Cheltenham.

The return of this tournament marked a return of larger martial arts tournaments of this type since Covid19 appeared and caused such a huge upset to martial arts practice and competition. The GTI knew that planning this tournament could be a success or a risk that proved coatyl and mis-timed. Thankfully the tournament was a success.

The GTI confirmed that there were about 240 competitors spread across the categories which was actually around 20 more than the previous comparable tournament. Several new associations entered their teams too which is an encouraging thing to see with members from the Royal Navy, Team Wales, ITF England, TAGB and more.

Categories focused on (ITF Style) patterns and sparring with children undertaking point sparring and adults undertaking light, continuous. There was no power breaking as this would be a feature of the British Championships to bebheld on Sunday November 7th 2021.

Zen Kenpo instructor Adam Gold travelled to Cheltenham to take part in this tournament to represent the clubs. Whilst at the time of competing the Zen Kenpo group do not have any active Taekwon-Do classes, Mr. Gold is an active practitioner of Taekwon-Do with a 3rd degree black belt in the ITF style of the art.

Mr. Gold entered both the black belt patterns and veteran's black belt categories.

He did not place in the top three for paterns. Whilst his pattern was performed well and was given good scores by the judges, the field of black belt competitors numbered more than 20 and some of the younger competitors used their advantage of flexibility to perform their patterns to an excellent standard, with medals earned by deserving taekwondoists.

At around 2.30pm the black belt sparring categories began. Mr. Gold competed against 2 opponents to secure a silver medal in the veterans black belt sparring category. Mr. Gold won his first fight against a TAGB champion, likely edging the points with a well timed hooking kick to the head within the first minute of the fight. Mr. Gold then went on to fight against a member of the ITF England team who, whilst weighing maybe 10kg less, was a fast and accurate taekwondoist and had a higher work rate than Mr. Gold.

Following the competition, Mr. Gold said:

Whilst I am pleased with my performance, I know that it could have been better. I could have trained more and my work rate needs to improve. I shall be going back to training with a strategy to improve and return as a better martial artist for the next tournament.

This tournament marked the 24th year that Mr. Gold has been competing in a variety of martial arts styles and tournaments. Association head, Soke Cliff Witcher said of this tournament:

Mr. Gold has done an amazing job considering the absence of Taekwon-Do classes over the past couple of years and having had several inhibiting injuries recently. Anyone who competes is a winner in my eyes regardless of the result and this association considers our competitors a credit to what we strive to achieve.

Mr. Gold plans to return to the GTI British Championships in November to compete ansd to defend his previous gold medal in destruction (board breaking)

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