The World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) has released the October Para Taekwondo World Rankings which have seen yet more changes at the top of the sport following the record-breaking 5th Open European Para Taekwondo Championships in September.
The European Para Taekwondo Championships took part in Warsaw, Poland, on 16 September and involved a record-breaking 132 athletes from 30 countries and four continents. A Para taekwondo refugee athlete competed at the Championships for the very first time in a demonstration of the WTF’s commitment to providing opportunities for all athletes to compete. The Championships also saw poomsae P20 (intellectually impaired) and P30 (motor impaired) classes compete for the first time and attracted 26 athletes to the competition.
Turkey finished on top of the women’s medal table at the Championships, followed by Russia and Denmark while an additional nine countries earned medals demonstrating the strength and depth of Para taekwondo. In the men's competition it was Russia who came out on top followed by Azerbaijan and Turkey. A total of 15 countries won medals in the men’s competition.
The full results from the Championships can be found on the WTF’s website.
Notable changes in the World Rankings following the results of the European Championships include:
• Ivan Mikulic, Croatia: regained his position as world No. 1 following a gold medal at the Championships in the men’s K44 over 75 kg division
• Amy Truesdale, Great Britain: regained her position as world No. 1 after winning gold at the Championships in the women’s K44 over 58 kg division. She had lost the top spot following last year's World Championships
• Mehmet Sami Sarac, Turkey: won the final of the men’s K42 under 61kg against Iran’s world No. 1 ranked Saeid Sadeghianpour. Sarac now climbs to No. 2 in the world rankings and will be chasing Sadeghianpour for the top spot
• In the men’s K42 over 75 kg, Kazakhstan’s world No. 1 Nyshan Omrali faced off against Azerbaijan’s world No. 2 Alexandr Polishuk. Polishuk came out on top in the final and takes over the top spot in the division as a result.
The full list of world rankings can be found on the WTF’s website.
WTF President Chungwon Choue said: “This year has been fantastic for Para taekwondo. The 5th Open European Para Taekwondo Championships was an historic event and showed that the sport continues to grow around the world. We still have so much more to achieve and we are working hard to make sure that we realise our potential. The WTF is currently reviewing the competition and ranking rules and new rules will come into effect on 1 January next year as part of our ongoing commitment to constantly improving the sport for our athletes and our fans.”
The final Para taekwondo event of the year will be the 2nd Oceania Para Taekwondo Open Championships and will be held in Suva, Fiji, on 27-28 November and registrations are currently ongoing.
*Editor’s note: The International Paralympic Committee suspended the Russian Paralympic Committee on 7 August for its inability to fulfil its IPC membership responsibilities and obligations, in particular its obligation to comply with the IPC Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code (to which it is also a signatory). As a result of the suspension, Russian athletes cannot enter IPC sanctioned events or competitions, including the Paralympic Games. For further information please click here: https://www.paralympic.org/russian-paralympic-committee-suspension