Hannah ‘Hype’ Whittaker, Jennifer Pena, ‘Angry’ Courtney Smith, Shane O’Rourke and Ben Haplin won medals for England at the AETF European Championships 2016. Hannah, Jennifer and Courtney were part of the women’s sparring team which won silver in Finland, while Shane and Ben helped the men’s team to a bronze medal.
Six students from De Silva Taekwondo travelled to the Finnish town of Tampere to take part in the European Championships, five of them competing in the team events and individual competitions.
While all the players performed to the best of their ability in the individual battles, it was the team events in which they had something to show for their efforts.
Hannah, Courtney and Jennifer made up half of the women’s sparring team which reached the European team final for the second year running. Unfortunately, they were up against the Polish team that had defeated them the previous year. It was a similar story here, as despite battling hard in the final, they lost out once again, finishing as Vice European Champions.
In the men’s team sparring competition, Shane and Ben helped England defeat reigning champions Ireland in the first round, but despite this amazing result, they couldn’t manage to win the event and had to be content with bronze. Together with Jason Carsberg, they also took part in individual competitions at the tournament. While all performing to the best of their abilities, they missed out on a medal this time.
De Silva Taekwondo founder and England coach Johann De Silva said: “I was so proud to be an England coach and to see my students line up for their country at the European Championships. All of the students should be happy with their perfprmances, but it was great to see Hannah, Jennifer and Courtney pick up silver for their considerable efforts.”
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