The Premier Taekwondo Club enjoyed success at the Ultimate Open Taekwondo Championships.
The Birkby-based club took a small team of competitors to the Red v Blue Open Taekwondo championships in Dewsbury and came away with an impressive medal haul.
Premier decided to send just three athletes on what was coach Mojitaba Bagherzadeh’s (Moji) first time coaching in the UK – a role normally undertaken by his brother Mosy.
Charlotte Simpson’s weight division had no other entries and she was forced to move up two weight groups, but having reached the semi-final she suffered a bout of illness before facing a taller opponent.
Simpson put in a great performance losing by just a single point to take the bronze medal.
Alex Needham has been moved up a weight group to 68kg and went into his semi-final with confidence despite only just returning from injury.
Needham’s experience internationally on electronic scoring saw him beat his opponent by stoppage at the end of the second round.
In the final he faced a fellow Great Britain invitational squad member and worked hard to open up a good 5-2 lead by the end of the first round.
Needham moved through the gears in the second for a 10-3 lead and in the final round managed to again 12 points to end the match 16-4 for the gold medal.
Caden Cunningham was fighting in pewees and was always a strong contender for gold as one of Britain’s up-and-coming talents.
His semi-final was soon settled as he took a 5-0 lead which he then built on not dropping a single point in an 11-0 victory.
Cunningham’s final was against a strong player but he scored eight points in the first round to lead 8-4, and extended his lead in the second to 12-5.
Going into the final round Cunningham needed to defend and a spirited last round from his opponent made for a great fight finishing 13-5.
Cunningham was in great form and was awarded fighter of the day to add to his gold medal.
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