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2015 European Championships Moldova
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The Coaching Committee would like to extend our congratulations to all the TeamUK competitors for their recent success at the 2015 European Championships in Moldova.

As always a huge thank you goes out to all the Umpires, Coaches, Event Staff and Tournament Committee for making the competition such a fantastic event for the competitors.  Without their dedication and professionalism these events would not be possible, often working in the background throughout the whole week to ensure everything is prepared and runs smoothly.

A special thank you goes to Mr & Mrs Richards, Mr Kevin McCabe and Miss Prit Sidhu our official UKITF umpires, Miss Ashley Nicholls for her tireless organisation behind the scenes, the Chand Institute for transporting the scoring equipment by road, Mr & Mrs Luckman our Event Staff, Master Perez for running a slick competition, the additional coaches whose support the Coaching Committee rely on to assist us, and finally Grand Master Nicholls whose incite and advice both before and throughout the event are essential to TeamUK and their success.

After many months of dedicated preparation Monday 20th July 2015 saw TeamUK depart Heathrow airport en-route to the capital of Moldova, Chisinau, for the 2015 European Championships.  Despite the early start for the first half of the Team, a sleepy 6am departure, the excitement and anticipation could be felt running through the competitors, parents and officials.  The second half of TeamUK would follow on later in the day to complete a team of 48 competitors backed up by parents, umpires, event staff, VIPs and coaches, bringing the total travelling to nearly 100 people.

After a brief stopover in Vienna we were greeted with a warm welcome by the Moldovan delegation at Chisinau airport followed by a short minibus drive to our hotels.  The rest of the day was spent settling in and exploring the local surroundings topped by an evening meal at a local restaurant organised by hosting committee.

Over the next few days TeamUK weighed in with everyone making their category weight and we took advantage of the free time to attend training sessions organised by the coaches at the hotels for individuals and Team events.  We also had the good fortune to train in the venue itself, a fantastic opportunity to experience the competition arena before the start of the event.

Friday 24th July arrived and the competition commenced with the U14 and Senior categories, patterns and sparring.  TeamUK were off to a flying start with 7 European Champions and many Silver and Bronze medals from these first few categories.  The day progressed well and the competition moved on to start the U16/U18 groups for patterns and sparring, ending the day with 19 European Champions, 12 silver and 9 Bronze medals.  A fantastic first day.

Day 2 on Saturday 25th started with great excitement looking to build on our first day success.  The adult categories began with male patterns and it didnt take long for our medal count to increase.

After a short lunch break came the opening ceremony with speeches, vocal performances and a military demonstration of weapon tactics and unarmed combat.  Eleven countries paraded their respective country flags with two representative competitors for each country.

The Officials re- convened and the competition restarted, completing the remaining individual events and starting the Team competition.

TeamUK ended the second day with a superb medal count and 17 more European Champions, a total now of 36 Gold, 21 Silver and 18 Bronze medals.  A fantastic achievement.

Sunday 26th arrived and the final day of competition, conclusion of the team events and a focus on the Destruction and Special Technique events.  Another superb day of competition, with TeamUK ending the competition with a grand total of 91 medals, and 36 individual European Champions and Gold for 3 Team events, fantastic!!

The day was rounded off with the medal presentations where TeamUK were also awarded Best Overall Country, Best Overall Adult Country and Best Overall Junior Country not to mention many best overall competitors!!  Now just to get those trophies home!!

What an overall result for TeamUK!  The team were awesome across all 3 days of competition and demonstrated once again their skill and determination to win against such tough competition.

The full listings of the results can be found on the ITF website, http://www.itf-administration.com.

Next stop Brighton for the 2016 World Championships.

Written by: On behalf of the UKITF Coaching Committee - 23rd August 2015

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