Get your reminders ready, in the month of May we will know who will be crowned European Taekwondo champion in 2022 in each weight category when the city of Manchester hosts the European Senior Championships, the jewel in the ETU calendar.
With this event, which promises to be of great impact, the Senior athletes begin to close the road to Paris 2024 as it is a G4 event that awards 40 points to the winner.
In Manchester will be the best athletes in Europe looking for the forty (40) World Ranking points. In fact, there are already recognized athletes who are registered for having obtained the Wild Card for their position in the Albanian President’s Cup.
Unfortunately this year 2022 we have had a very uncomfortable situation for all Taekwondo lovers with the war between Russia and Ukraine.
The suspension of the Russian TKD from activities, in accordance with the world line of boycotting the Russian government for the invasion of Ukraine, leaves out of the event one of the strongest teams in the world today.
For this European event, with the departure of the strongest team in the area, as demonstrated at the Albania 2022 President’s Cup, where they took half of the gold medals, there are other players who can win the European team title, which this time will have five major candidates.
The host Great Britain, which has very important athletes in both genders, Turkey, Spain, France and Italy, are showing compact teams that are asking to dominate categories and split the medal table.
But apart from the historically dominant countries there are several individuals such as Croatian, Serbian and Belgian athletes. Also Greece has gold medal potential for this big event.
Several weeks ago we had pleasant talks with representatives of the ETU, who have said that for the European Championships the British and the organisation that governs TKD in Europe have some big surprises in store. Among them, the television system will play an important role in broadcasting the event.
However, let us hope that at some point, these difficulties can be overcome and welcome back this Taekwondo team to formal competitions.
Virus did not stop TKD.
It is already two years with difficulties in the world because of the Covid virus. However, the Taekwondo family has managed to adapt and overcome the difficulties. In the last two years we have remained strong and technology has helped.
All these challenging experiences that humanity brings has always been overcome by the philosophy that Taekwondo teaches us, which is to persevere and dedicate our efforts to continue practising and developing the sport and the Olympic values: to respect each other, to embrace each other, even if our countries are divided by conflict.
Today, the world is once again facing unprecedented times, sport and sporting events are particularly affected. In spite of this, Taekwondo and sport remain a source of joy and unity for all.
Carlos Hernandez (MT).
Harald Ranftl ().