Hall praise for record-breaking cycle but wants to raise bar even higher towards Paris 2024
31st December 2021
Gary Hall is determined to push GB Taekwondo to new levels of excellence along the road to Paris 2024 despite record-breaking results during the last Olympic cycle.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games saw five fighters return with medals.
And while gold medals eluded the Manchester trained squad, the cycle brought other major honours including world titles in 2019 for Bradly Sinden, Jade Jones and Bianca Walkden.
Success was achieved despite the restrictions on training and competition due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
So, Performance Director Hall is delighted how his athletes overcame the challenges to succeed on the international stage.
“We have a very resilient team that has the ability to flex and find a way which it did brilliantly well,” he said. “I must say the coaching was outstanding too.
“There have been some absolutely brilliant performances,” added Hall in his end of year review.
“To come away from the Olympic and Paralympic Games with five medals out of eight people, fielded across two Games, was outstanding work.
“So, it was the most successful cycle (extended from four to five years due to coronavirus) on record at major event with major medal-winning performances.
“It is a really positive thing to be able to say after a cycle that has been impacted and affected by Covid.
“The aim, however, is to get even better than we are today. It is two and a half years to Paris and the race is already on to see who will get those spots.”
Bradly Sinden (silver), Lauren Williams (silver) and three-time world champion Walkden (bronze) stood on the podium in Tokyo. So too did Beth Munro (silver) and Amy Truesdale (bronze) as taekwondo made a competitive debut at the Paralympics.
“We have looked at the things that went right in the Tokyo cycle and things that didn’t go right,” explained Hall.
“We have re-set some core values around mindsets, standards, communications and data management.
“They are real key areas we are going to focus on in the next two and a half years. We have already introduced new players for this next cycle and we will be looking to add more.
“It has been a really good year. Everybody has found ways to keep things moving forward and has set us up for a strong 2022 which includes a senior Europeans and Grand Prix in Manchester and a World Championships towards the end of the year.”