Tallaght’s Jack Woolley takes World Number One ranking
By Stephen Leonard
SOUTH Dublin Taek-wondo’s Jack Woolley has gone top of the World rankings in his fin weigh -54kg category.
A consistent medallist at junior degree, the Tallaght lad has brought that same steadiness into the senior ranks.
Indeed this year alone he has secured bronze in Germany and the USA, along with three golds in Bulgaria, Spain and the African WTF President’s Cup.
Next month will see him line out in the World Championships in Korea with coaching support from SDTKD and Ireland Coach Robert Taaffe, and Olympic Gold medallist Dongmin Cha, who is a support coach to the team.
Following the worlds he will then turn his attention to the higher weight of -58kg in preparation for the WTF Grand Prix Series later in the year which will take him to Moscow, Marrakesh, London and hopefully The Ivory Coast, should he secure a place in the Grand Prix Final.
‘It is with great pride and delight I get to announce that our country of Ireland has topped the world rankings in the sport closest to my heart,” remarked a delighted South Dublin Coach Robert Taaffe.
“I am an avid sports fan, with memories of Irish sporting greats and number ones in different disciplines, and to have taekwondo mentioned in the same breath for our sporting nation is a delight.
“After years of hard work and dedication Jack has topped the World rankings in his -54kg weight category. Another milestone achieved and another chapter closed.
“The ranking was sought not for the praise, but for the purpose, and as equally as it was sought, we will now let it go as required in search of other stepping stones to achieving the greatest potential possible,” he added.
Woolley trains out of Tallaght Leisure Centre throughout the week and is set to do his Leaving Certificate exams, after which he bids for a World gold and 120 Olympic ranking points to assist his Tokyo2020 quest.
Delighted at securing the Number One spot, Woolley posted online: “It’s been a really tough two-and-a-half years of transferring from junior to senior, but I’ve done it.
“Ecstatic is an absolute understatement, and I want to say I wouldn’t be where I am today without my friends, family and coaches, but most importantly my coach Robert Taaffe.
“The most inspirational coach out there, he works just as hard as me and dedicates himself and his time to the sport” he added.