On the last day of May and the first day of June the 5th edition of the Holland Cup hosted by the Netherlands was held in Pijnacker’s sportcentrum called De Viergang. Pijnacker is next to Delft, where the main organizer and his club (Sportschool Tim Kool) also hold their trainings.
8 nations (Belgium, Germany, England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Malaysia and of course the Netherlands), with almost 500 participants registered for this year’s event - 194 B class and 304 A class competitors.
The weather was exceptionally good at the weekend, with a lot of sunshine which filled our hearts with joy and energy, so everyone was looking forward to start the tournament after the Dutch national holiday.
As in previous years the competition began on Saturday. This day was for the high belts, the A class competition was held for everyone over blue belt (4th gup and upwards). The rules again were a bit amended to fit all the competitors as the event was an open one (so there were competitors from different organizations). As usual the contest started with the pattern events on 7 rings.
A lot of high ranked VIP guests visited the event. Master Coos van de Heuvel arrived on his motorbike to take a look around, and I was able to share some thoughts about the event with him.
Many masters and instructors arrived with their own club as coaches. Not a complete list and not in order of importance: Master Willy van de Mortel, sabum Julia Cross (multi-world champion from Scotland), sabum Collin Adolfs (ruling World champion), Britt Adolfs (ruling European champion), Master Thomas Dennis, Master James Tjin-a-Ton (member of the AETF Umpire Committee), sabum Lilian Doulay (ruling European champion from France), sabum Chiel Rombout, Master Triqui Brahim (Germany), sabum Stephen Tapilatu, Master Wijnand Tapilatu and of course the organizer, sabum Tim Kool, ruling European champion.
The organization of the events was exceptionally precise, everything went as planned. If you haven't been at the event's venue or read the previous reports of the past editions of the cup, you might be wondering how crowded it was, but on the contrary, it was quite nice as the sportcenter is a rather large arena - almost double the size of a normal indoor court. Having this much space the organizers surrounded an area for the preparing teams as well as 3 small areas for the gathering for the upcoming categories, so checking the competitors and their ID cards took place not at the edge of the ring, making more space around, causing less confusion.
Of course we should not forget the umpires who volunteered: they have played a key role in the smooth run of the events. Many of them were just junior, trainee umpires, some of them were even umpires for the first time, however all of them showed outstanding performance. The first day was finished with the sparring categories. The sparring for the children was held not in weight categories, but they were grouped based on their height which was quite unusual for the ones who got used to the weight groups.
One interesting fact: the youngest competitor was 6, while the eldest one was 61 years old! It was good to see that there were a good couple of older competitors: fathers, mothers and possibly even grandparents who were still kicking, representing the most precious thing taekwon-do can offer: health.
As it was the 5th event the organizers were thinking about making it a special one by adding a special category which was available for everyone. They decided on a yop chagi competition, where the goal was to hold your leg in a yop chagi position over the height of your own hip for as long as possible: whoever could hold it for the longest time won the competition.
This year's best teams were the PUMA club from England on Saturday, taking the first place on the overall team ladder in category A, and Buell Sport from the Netherlands who took home the gold in category B.
Everyone left the competition in a great mood, wishing to see each other again in 2015 at the 6th edition of the Holland Cup.
Pictures are available on Facebook
- from Saturday at:
- from Sunday at:
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|Final results of the 5th edition of the Holland Cup:|
Sparring youth B-class
Sparring youth A-class
Sparring juniors B-class
|Sparring juniors A-class
Sparring seniors B-class
Sparring seniors A-class