TMA competitors hold their own on Euro stage
TALLAGHT Martial Arts saw 11 of their junior students represent their club and Ireland proudly at the WAKO European Championships in Budva, Montenegro last week.
Attracting more than 1600 competitors from 46 countries, the tournament proved hugely competitive.
Sarah Cassidy and Louis McGlinchey started the week competing in forms, both turning in very impressive performances with the latter earning a bronze medal in creative weapons.
Another first-timer to the WAKO Championships was Thomas Potter, who produced a great demonstration of speed and skill in the -69kg Point Fighting Older Cadet Boys division in which he was beaten narrowly in the final.
Nathan Kelly controversially lost his Junior Boys -57kg semi-final, forcing him to settle for a fine bronze nonetheless.
The week ended with many of the Tallaght Martial Arts athletes selected to represent Ireland in the team events.
The junior girls, with Zara Jones and Naoise Colvin, were beaten in a very close semi-final by Greece and so earned a hard-fought WAKO bronze medal.
Potter added to his tally with a bronze on the Older Cadet Boys team, while Anna White, Dillon McClelleand, Cassidy, Sara Burke and Eryn Birkhead also fought on teams, but both outfits were narrowly beaten in the quarter finals.
“Many of the Tallaght athletes lost narrowly and many deserved medals for their preparation and performances, but this is sport, and once they dusted themselves off, they were back supporting their team mates, showing great sportsmanship and maturity” said TMA instructor Dave Heffernan.
“This is something that is very important here to us in Tallaght Martial Arts.
“We develop young people, not just fighters. It is important they learn from sport, build character, and deal with loss. That is the ethos of our club.
“It was a very successful week for Tallaght Martial Arts and after a difficult 18 months, these young athletes must be admired for the manner in which they firstly prepared and finally represented their country” he insisted.