THE WITS Tang Soo Do club were the dominant contenders in a national championship in Bloemfontein recently when they snatched 23 medals and won the tournament overall.
Tang Soo Do is a Korean martial art which involves hand and kicking techniques similar to taekwondo.
The team were among 150 participants and, according to Wits Tang Soo Do coach, Gregory Hart, it was “competitive with strong guys”. “There were 20 people in each category, age and belt levels and the competition standards were high.”[pullquote]“It really is a great achievement”[/pullquote]
Wits brought home 23 medals in total. Three bronze and three silvers as a team; four individuals won gold medals, five won silver and eight bagged bronze.
“It really is a great achievement. It’s quite a good return on investment. They all did very well,” said Hart.
Wits Tang Soo Do club member Titus Masike said the team’s performance in Bloemfontein was successful, but further acknowledged they could have done better.“We don’t have a lot of gold [medals], but we would love to have a lot of gold come through.”
At the South African championships in February, six club members qualified to compete in the world championships in the Netherlands in October. However, only three are going because of the cost involved.
Hart said in order to qualify for the world championships, individuals had to win a gold medal at the SA Champs. The three who are going will be sent to a training camp in Nelspruit, in July, where they will be put through a series of tests.
Hart said the main challenges the club faced were team members balancing their academic studies and commitment to the sport. However, Hart said the Tang Soo Do club at Wits was growing and people were finding interest in the club.