Triumph for Croatian Teams in Taekwondo Championship

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Vedran Golec won the gold in the heaviest category, above 87 kg, while in total team ranking Jastreb from Zagreb won a silver medal and Marjan from Split a bronze

At the 5th Team European Championship in Taekwondo in Turskih Antalya, the highest achievement by far was by Vedran Golec. In the finals of his category he faced the toughest obstacle – Azerbaijani Radik Isayev. Isajev is the current Olympic winner from Rio de Janeiro, with a gold from the 1st European Games in Baku in 2015, world champion from Čeljabinsk in 2015 and European champion from Baku in 2014. This is the man Golec defeated in a very close final with 7:6, Jutarnji List reported on February 10, 2017.

“This is properly called a “nice scalp,” said Vedran Golec. “I was the second seeded at the Championship, so I had a total of three fights. In the first round I defeated Turkish Mehmet Korucu with 21:1. My next opponent was another Azerbaijani, who went down 20:7. So I finally met with the first seeded and absolutely best in this category, Radik Isayev.”

This is not Vedran’s first medal, nor his first gold from the European team championships.

“I won a gold in 2014, then a bronze the year after. This is my third medal and a second gold,” added Golec.

This was not the only medal for Croatia or the Jastreb team. A bronze went to Luka Horvat in the category up to 80 kg. He defeated Turkish Simsek Okan 8:6 in the first round and Pole Karol Holubowicz 6:5 in the next round. In the semi-finals he was bested by the current European champion Milad Beigi Harchegani, Azerbaijani of Iranian origin, with 16:9.

Gold was also won by Toni Kanaet (Marjan, up to 74 kg) and bronze by Marko Mutak (Casper Zagreb, up to 74 kg) and Lovre Brečić (Marjan Split, up to 63 kg).

In total team rankings gold went to the Azerbaijani national team, followed by two Croatian teams: silver for Jastreb from Zagreb and bronze to Marjan from Split.

In women’s competition there was also great success: in the category up to 67 kg, Matea Jelić (Marjan Split) won a silver and Doris Pole (Dubrava Zagreb) a bronze. Kristina Tomić (Osvit Zagreb) won gold in the category up to 49 kg, while Marija Štetić (Dubrava Zagreb) won a silver in the category up to 62 kg). In team rankings, Osvit from Zagreb placed third.


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