Seeing double but Olympic champ Jones stays focussed to win Grand Prix
3rd December 2017
Jade Jones described her latest World Taekwondo Grand Prix victory as “surreal” after equalling teammate Bianca Walkden’s title-winning achievement in the Ivory Coast.
The double Olympic champion claimed her second GP gold medal of 2017 thanks to victory over an opponent with a familiar name.
After surviving a couple of tight matches in the build-up to the -57kg final, Jones cut loose in the final, overwhelming Marta Calvo Gomez 26-7.
The 21-year-old Spaniard is younger sister of the Welsh star’s former nemesis, Eva Calvo Gomez.
“It felt so weird,” said Jones after her following up her Grand Prix success at London’s Copper Box Arena.
“At first I thought ‘here we go again, another Calvo Gomez! It was surreal fighting the other sister.
“But both have the same style so I knew what I had to do.
“To finish the year on a high is amazing,” added the Flint star who knocked out Russian Tatiana Kudashova 18-14 in the semi-finals.
“Now, I can relax and enjoy Christmas with my family properly. Christmas wouldn’t have been the same had I lost.”
Jones admitted she struggled in the early stages, especially in the last eight against Raheleh Asemani of Belgium, hampered by conditions at the Abidjan venue.
“They were really tough: I can’t explain how hot it was,” said the 2012 and 2016 Olympic gold medallist.
“They were conditions we have never dealt with before. And I had a bad match in the quarter-finals.
“Mentally, I probably wasn’t up to it and it was a cagey match. Getting that close woke me up and I gave myself a talking to.
“I knew if I didn’t step up then I wasn’t going to win. The semi-final and final were much better.”
Jones’ compatriot, Lauren Williams, lost 24-21 to home favourite Ruth Gbagbi in the quarter-finals of the -67kg division.
There were last eight defeats also for Abidjan born Mahama Cho (22-12, Vladislav Larin) and Peter Longobardi-Radford (14-13, Alexey Denisenko)