2005 South East Opens
Students from Rayners Lane Taekwon-do Academy recently competed at the prestigious South East Opens, the premier Taekwon-do tournament for the South East of England, based in St Albans, which runs once a year.
12 students from the Academy competed in this open weight event, meaning there were no weight divisions, so lighter competitors had to face larger ones as was shown with Mr Anslow (the Academy instructor) opponent weighing some 20 Kilos more than him.
The events divisions were large to say the least, with some featuring over 50 competitors, all vying for that coveted gold, so the competition was fierce from the 22 plus Taekwon-do schools that took part.
The event featured different sections: Patterns (pre-arranged movements where skill, power & finesse are shown), Sparring (where students fight off for medal positions) and Destruction (where students must break boards to attain medal positions), with the extra 'King of the Ring' events finishing the day.
From the Academy, many students were successful, with Lyndsey Sainsbury, Dev Patel, Sonal Lakhman & Justin Goh winning gold medals in their respective sparring divisions after some very tough bouts. Kate Barry won a silver after having to fight fellow student Sonal Lakhman in a very close final. Richard Simon won a silver medal in his first ever tournament for sparring and Gill Nightingale won both a silver for patterns & a bronze for sparring in her sections. Colin Avis and Paraas Tank also took Bronze medals on the day, Paraas, like Kate, unfortunately losing out to fellow student Dev Patel in the semi-finals. Fellow students Ben Clarke and Hershal Shah, gave good accounts of themselves and were unfortunate not to place higher, but the divisions were highly contested.
The Academies instructor added more points to the final medal totals by winning 3 gold medals for destruction. These were won in two 'Special Technique' events, where black belt competitors much perform jumping techniques correctly, hitting the target or breaking boards with the highest winning. This event featured 'Flying High Kick' and 'Jumping Reverse Turning Kick'. The third gold was won in the Hand Destruction section after numerous breaks against many skilled competitors.
The day finished with the extra events called 'King of the Ring'. These are points fighting divisions and add prestige to an already great event. This year featured three 'King of the Rings', one for juniors, one for adult coloured belts & one for black belts. The events are all grades and only one medal to win, ie. The gold. Rayners Lane Taekwon-do Academy had no students in the junior section, but the adult coloured belts section was won by student Justin Goh, whom had performed so well earlier on. The black belt section was won for the second year running by the Academies instructor, Mr Anslow.
A successful day rounded off with the final points tally. Rayners Lane Taekwon-do Academy, despite only fielding 12 competitors came second out of some 22 schools that took part, only being beaten by the host school themselves who fielded many good competitors (30+). The 3rd place went to Essex Taekwon-do which fielded over 19 competitors and is a quality school, which goes a long way to show the quality of students Rayners Lane Taekwon-do Academy produce with their exception competition record (last year producing 7 World Champions from a single school).
2005 South East Opens