Electronic Protector Tournament Kicks Off
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
The WTF Electronic Protector International Taekwondo Championships kicked off for a two-day run in Chuncheon, Korea, on March 4, 2007.
The event, which took place at the Hoban Gymnasium in downtown Chuncheon, drew about 160 athletes and officials from 19 countries.
This championship will determine whether the electronic protector system will be adopted at the upcoming 2007 World Taekwondo Championships and the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
The opening ceremony was followed by a demonstration of taekwondo practitioners with a disability, and a demonstration of competition uniforms for taekwondo poomsae.
The opening day of the championships using electronic protectors featured two male and two female Olympic categories. In the male -58kg category, Japan’s Kango Uchimura won the gold medal by brushing aside a stiff challenge from Spain’s Jose Lois Mendez. The bronze was shared by Egypt’s Tamer Salah Ali Baumi and France’s Seninor Thomas.
In the female -49kg class, Mexico’s Alejandra Gaal clinched the gold in the sudden-death round by beating Korea’s Jo Eun-bi. The bronze went to the Philippines’ Alora Kathleen Eunice and Greece’s Fotini Birba.
In the male -80kg final match, France’s Lopes Jonathan needed the fourth sudden-death round to earn his country the gold medal as he outperformed Italy’s Sarmiento Mauro. The bronze went to Turkey’s Serdar Akin and Egypt’s Adb Al-Rahman Osama Tawfik.
Turkey’s Sibel Guler won the gold medal in the female -67kg final as she outpointed Korea’s Kim Ji-hye 4-2. The bronze was shared by Egypt’s Seham Mohamed El Sawalhy and the Philippines’ Alora Kirstie Elaine.
The existing kyorugi competition rules of the WTF were applied to the electronic protector event, except some changed rules. According to the newly applied rules, no time limit was given to the sudden-death round until any contestant scores a point. In the decision of the sudden-death round, only positive points count. The win by a 12-point ceiling was not applied this time, but the 7-point gap was applied. In case of attacks on the front face where there are no sensors, points will be valid if two out of three referees (center referee and corner judges) give points when one of the center referee or corner judges raise an objection.
Several countries sent their national players to Chuncheon just for monitoring the electronic protector championships. We are awaiting now the decision of WTF if the electronic protector will be used at the upcoming World Championships 2007 in Beijing.