Sports

Ghanaian athletes fail to shine at World Taekwondo Championships

Ghana’s national team athletes, Amed Sama and Henrietta Armah say they have gained valuable experience from participating in the just ended World Taekwondo Championships held in Baku, Azerbaijan on May 29 to June 4.

Henrietta lost her Round of 32 bout to Hong Kong’s Lam Sui Wai 20-19 on Wednesday, May 31 in the -49Kg category.

She put up a respectable performance to win the first Round 8-0, but lost the second due to head points garnered by her opponent with a tie of 8-8.

She pushed for glory but also lost the third round 4-11.

Sama mounted the mats at the Baku Crystal Hall against a Brazilian opponent, Assis Matos Vinicius, in the -74Kg on Saturday, June 3, but lost in two rounds, suffering a 0-7 and 1-8 verdict, respectively. 

Speaking with the media, Henrietta said “We lost at the initial stages, but we’ve learnt a lot and that is good for us. The World Championships gives exposure and makes you know current trends and styles of sparring. With continuous support for these kind of championships, we’ll go far. We’re grateful to all who supported us to make this dream a reality.”

The two athletes were supported by the President and Vice President of the Ghana Taekwondo Federation (GTF), Mr Frederick Lartey Otu and Charles Tsibo Cromwell, Hollard Insurance and the Aryee and Anderson families and funds raised by the athletes.

The championship attracted close to 1,000 athletes from 144 Member National Associations and one refugee team.

The Communications Director of the GTF, Mr Davis Clottey, told the Times Sports yesterday that participation at the Baku 2023 was critical for Ghana’s membership ranking by World Taekwondo (WT), and formed part of preparations towards the African Games that has been scheduled for 2024 in Accra. 

He said the athletes relied on individuals and a few organisations after failing to get support from the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MoYS) and the National Sports Authority (NSA).

Ghana’s last participation at the World Championships was in Republic of Korea, Muju 2017.

BY TIMES SPORTS REPORTER

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