Trio Of GB Taekwondo Fighters Handed Croatian Test
Three of Great Britain’s emerging prospects can claim the spotlight for themselves this weekend after success for their big hitting team mates at Manchester’s recent WTF World Taekwondo Grand Prix.
And the 2020 Olympics may be a long way in the distance but Josh Calland, Max Cater and Ben Haines could well be Tokyo Games contenders.
Portsmouth born Haines narrowly missed WGP selection while teenagers Calland and Cater competed alongside medal winners, Jade Jones (gold), Bianca Walkden and Lutalo Muhammad (both silver) in the final event before next month’s Series final in Mexico.
Cater from Southampton also registered a maiden GP victory at the Regional Arena so he’s keen to build on that welcome confidence shot at the Croatian Open in Zagreb.
“It was great getting experience of fighting these top guys,” said Cater. “I want to try and get to Rio but Tokyo 2020 is where I really want to push for.”
Calland, also 18, from Liverpool missed out on a win but he has medals to his name this year from Greece, Holland and Austria. The duo will compete at -58kg while Haines-also in action on Saturday-fights at -74kg looking to add to podium finishes during 2015 in Turkey, Australia and Israel.
All three have also been named for the French Open in Paris the following weekend.
*Manchester’s GB Academy in Newton Heath will play host to a 12-strong South Korean squad later this month, including former Asian Championship gold medallist, Gangmin Cho, 2015 World Championship bronze medallist, Dongyun Shin and reigning World University Games champion, Minjeong Kim.
Croatian Open Schedule
-58kg: Josh Calland (Liverpool), Max Cater (Southampton)
-74kg: Ben Haines (Portsmouth)