Report on the 15th INTA Open International Championships
The recent performances at the 15th INTA Open proved a positive sign for the future of Taekwon-do in Ireland. A great turnout and some very high quality performances to be witnessed at the Championships in the Watershed Sports Centre, Kilkenny on Saturday and Sunday 1st and 2nd March. Members from all over the country as well as visiting teams from ITF Scotland and from TAE (England) took part. Six masters were present including Master Sutherland (VIII degree) and Master Dunbar (VII degree) from Scotland, Master O'Rourke (VII degree) from ITA, Master Franks (VII) from Waterford ITF, INTA President Master O'Toole (VIII degree) and INTA Vice-President Master Douglas (VIII degree).
Junior competitors (5-15 years) took part on Saturday. These colour belts made up over 50 categories of sparring, patterns and special technique. By the end of the day, there could be no doubt of the commitment and enthusiasm of so many junior members. Mr Stobie (VI degree), head of INTA Umpire Committee was delighted that both days progressed so smoothly and safely and mentioned the effort put in by all umpires. In particular a special thanks was given to the Tournament Director - Mr Wezelman (II degree) and his team in advance for the smooth running and organisation of the event.
On Sunday, the competition focused on over 100 competitors, including colour belts from 16 years and older and all junior and senior black belts. The high quality performances from all members but in particular some of the younger black belts was encouraging. The tournament catered for an over-35 section and allowed instructors the opportunity to take to the floor, with the support of their students the energy in the early afternoon was fantastic.
At the end of the tournament, Master Douglas and Master O'Toole commented on how rewarding it was to see the development of so many of their students over the recent years - many who started just a short few years ago - who have now progressed to such a high standard of performance, and who are also now playing such an active role in both the competing and organisation of events.
The INTA would like to offer their congratulations to all who took part. INTA members can look forward to another great competition when the INTA Nationals take place on18th and 19th October 2014in Kilkenny. Watch out for details later in the year.