On Sunday March 27th Emily White took part in the first evert Taekwon-Do University World championships in Manchester. Emily studies up in Liverpool.

The day before the arena was packed full of coloured belts and by all accounts was a great day.

Emily’s parents travelled up with myself to support her, we left Dorset at some unearthly hour in the morning to arrive in Manchester at 8am. We met up with Emily and waited for her first event which was in the ‘Patterns’ category. This is Emily’s favourite discipline in Taekwon-Do and went through the early rounds comfortably, reaching the final where she was up against an opponent who she’d previously lost to in another competition.

For those that don’t know, a pattern is a series of movements performed against imaginary opponents, with up to 72 ind movements. Patterns are judges on technical skill, balance, breath control and power. In top level competition the competitors can perform their own choice of pattern, followed by the judges choice.

I know I’m probably biased but I feel she won the choice pattern with her greater power and overall performance, so in my view she just needed to complete the second pattern with no mistakes to claim the gold medal. Unfortunately, she made an error at the end of the pattern meaning that the judges after a split decision gave her opponent the gold with Emily taking the silver.

Next came the sparring where Emily was up against an excellent kicker. Rounds in sparring are 2 x 2minute The first round she let her opponent dominate with her high kicking and point scoring front leg. After some advice in the break she came out with tremendous guts and determination, and again in my opinion came very closing to securing a win. However the judges voted for her opponent.

I as her coach could not be prouder of her achievement considering we don’t get to train together because of the 250 mile travel distance between us. I know she will succeed in her quest for success.

Malcolm Jones