Nepal bag four medals in Korea
Kathmandu, July 11
Four Nepali taekwondo players on Wednesday won medals in the 2018 Pohang World University Taekwondo Competition and Open Competition in Pohang, South Korea.
According to coach Deepak Bista, Anoj Pujari and Asmita Khadka won silver medals, while Sagar Guvaju and Gyanendra Hamal bagged bronze medals on the first day of the championship. Pujari finished second in the men’s below-87kg weight category when he lost 10-11 to an opponent from Sri Lanka in the competitive final bout. Pujari, who had a bye in the first round, made it to the final after his opponent from South Korea got injured and could not compete in the second round bout.
Likewise, Khadka defeated her South Korean opponent in the second round match before going down 22-10 in the final against Indonesian player. Khadka also had a bye in the first round. Also, Guvaju finished third after he faced an 11-25 defeat at the hands of a player from Malaysia in the men’s below-63kg weight category semi-final match. He had a first-round bye and was directly drawn in the semi-finals.
Similarly, Hamal defeated his Sri Lankan opponent 12-8 in the first round match of the men’s below-74kg weight category to make it to the semi-finals, where he faced a 12-25 loss against South Korean opponent.
The Nepali team is currently in South Korea to prepare for the 18th Asian Games slated for August 18 to September 2 in Indonesia. Olympians Sangina Baidya and Bista are looking after the team which has been kept under special camp in South Korea.
Bista said the tournament was a good platform for the players to prepare for the Asian Games. “They will get much-needed exposure from the tournament in South Korea,” he said.
Six other Nepali players are scheduled to compete in the championship on Thursday, while the Nepali team will take part in the team event on Friday. The Nepali team, which is in South Korea for the last two months, will fly to Indonesia from South Korea on August 15 to take part in the Asian Games.
Meanwhile, a 13-member Nepali team left for South Korea to participate in the 12th World Taekwondo Cultural Expo and Championship slated for July 12-17 in Muju. Nepal taekwondo Association President Prakash Shumsher Rana bade farewell to the team. After the championship, the team will travel to Thailand to attend the international seminar in Bangkok on July 22.