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Three finals but only one gold medal for Turkey

                                Montreux, 21 MAY 2016

The presence of Turkey in three of the four current finals, the "failure" of three of the four title holders to maintain their dominance, but also the fact that none of the athletes who qualified for the Rio 2016 through Olympic Ranking was able to win the gold medal in the category of -80kg, were just some of what happened in Montreux, Switzerland in the third day of the 22th European Championship.
Turkey had the chance to win three gold medals and effectively to ensure the first place in the overall medal standings from today. But among the candidates for the gold, only Irem Yaman (-62kg) managed to find herself on the highest step of the podium, taking the lead by Nina Klay (SUI) that after the completion of the European Championship announced her withdrawal from taekwondo.
As for Aaron Cook (MDA), Lutalo Muhammad (GBR), Albert Gaun (RUS) and Tahir Gulec (GER) who have secured their qualification for the Rio Olympic Games through Olympic Rankings, they all failed to secure the gold medal. Instead, at the top was the Milad Beigi Harchegani (AZE) who got the qualification for Brazil through European Qualification Tournament in Turkey.
Montreux proved a jinx for the three European champions of 2014, since none of them succeeded to maintain the ir crown. Klay, in his last international tournament reached the quarter-finals of the -62kg, as did Anastasiia Baryshnikova (RUS) in the -67kg, while Aaron Cook was third in the -80kg. In the same category also competed Albert Gaun (RUS) who was first in -74kg of Baku 2014.

Further information:
In -62kg, Irem Yaman was the World Ranking No.-1 and this was confirmed in Montreux. After the gold medal in Chelyabinsk 2015, she won the first place in the European Championship in Switzerland by winning 5-0 against Magda Wiet Henin (FRA). In the third position of the podium were Daniela Rotolo (ITA) and Rabia Gulec (GER). Culec, who was third in Baku 2014, in the summer will be present at the Rio Olympics, a position secured through the Qualification Tournament.
In -67kg, unknown until a few hours ago, Lauren Williams (GBR) succeeded to win the gold medal. Although the ranking (No-166) is not a foreshadowed road to gold, she scored four victories in the semis (among them against ranked No-2 Elin Johansson from Sweden), while in the final she beat in golden point (4- 3) Nur Tatar (TUR), second in 2012 at the London Olympics. Although she could not be found at the top of her category, Tatar with the silver medal she won has now reached four in total in the European Women's Championships, namely one gold (2012), two silver (2010, 2016) and one bronze (2014). In third place in the -67 kg was Matea Jelic (CRO) and the No-1 in the World Rankings, second in 2014 in Baku, Haby Niare (FRA).
In -74kg, Portugal celebrated their second gold medal in Montreux 2016. The No-1 World Ranking, Juio Ferreira, defeated 5-3 Toni Kanaet (CRO) in the final and was crowned a European champion for the first time in his career. The third place was taken by both Nicholas Corten (BEL) and Claudio Treviso (ITA).
In -80 kg, Milad Beigi Harchegani (AZE) tripled this year's victories against Yunu Sari (TUR). After he cut Sari`s way for the Rio Olympics (10-1 in the semifinal of the Qualification Tournament), and the gold medal in the final of World President's Cup (12-4), he also beat him in the final of Montreux 2016 by 5-0. Harchegani in the semifinals defeated the European champion of 2014 in Baku and No-2 in the World Ranking, Aaron Cook (MDA) by 1-0, while in the quarterfinals he prevailed by 1-0 in golden point against the European champion of 2014 in Baku in the category of - 74kg, Albert Gaun. With the medal he got in Montreux, Cook reached four (3-0-1) in the history of the games and the third under a different flag (Great Britain, Isle of Man, Moldavia).

Finals & Winners of Day 3
Female-A -62 kg
FINAL: Yaman, Irem-Wiet Henin, Magda 5-0
1. Yaman, Irem (TUR)
2. Wiet Henin, Magda (FRA)
3. Rotolo, Daniela (ITA)
3. Gulec, Rabia (GER)
Female-A -67 kg
FINAL: Tatar, Nur-Williams, Lauren 3-4 Golden point
1. Williams, Lauren (GBR)
2. Tatar, Nur (TUR)
3. Jelic, Matea (CRO)
3. Niare, Haby (FRA)
Male-A -74 kg
FINAL: Ferreira, Julio-Kanaet, Toni 5-3
1. Ferreira, Julio (POR)
2. Kanaet, Toni (CRO)
3. Corten, Nicholas (BEL)
3. Treviso, Claudio (ITA)
Male-A -80 kg
FINAL: Sari, Yunus-Beigi Harchegani, Milad 0-5
1. Beigi Harchegani, Milad (AZE)
2. Sari, Yunus (TUR)
3. Cook, Aaron (MDA)
3. Pazinski, Piotr (POL)
 
MEDAL STANDINGS (after 3rd day)
TURKEY 2-2-2, BELGIUM 2-0-2, GREAT BRITAIN 2-0-1, PORTUGAL 2-0-0, AZERBAIJAN 1-1-0, RUSSIA 1-0-5, UKRAINE 1-0-0, SERBIA 1-0-0, SPAIN 0-2-1, FRANCE 0-1-4, CROATIA 0-1-3, GERMANY 0-1-1, POLAND 0-1-1, SWEDEN 0-1-0, ISRAEL 0-1-0, SLOVENIA 0-1-0, ITALY 0-0-2, ARMENIA 0-0-1, MOLDOVA 0-0-1
STATEMENTS
Yamam Irem: “I am really excited for my succeed and winning the gold medal, it is hard to explain but I am really happy for this since is my first gold medal in Senior European Championships and it is so important for me. Sure one of the best things that ever happened to me especially because I feel like my efforts are paid and now I will keep on practising hard”.
Ferreira Julio: “Winning the gold medal after a hard game in the finals, is one of the greatest feelings definitely. It was difficult I got tired but in the end I achieved my goal and now I can feel exactly what happened. It is amazing I am really happy”.
Kanaet Toni: “I am happy for my silver medal but I could be better during the final and get the first place but this will make me even better and in the future I will do even more my best and I will continue trying so I will be able to achieve even more”.

 

 

 

 

    Montreux, 21 MAY 2016

Rui Braganca: Possibly the first Olympic medal in Taekwondo for Portugal.
Portugal counts overall 23 Olympic medals, but none of them in the sport of Taekwondo. Rui Braganca seems ideal to bring Portugal an Olympic medal in Taekwondo. The 25 year old athlete and No.2 in World Rankings, is one of the 72 qualifiers for Rio 2016.
According to the Portugese media, Braganca, one of the top European Taekwondo athletes and also a medicine student, is the big hope for Portugal to claim another medal in the Olympics. The combination of his success in Baku and Nalchik last year, along with the gold medal that he won in the European Taekwondo Championship in Montreux two days ago, might make a change in the lack of  Olympic medals of the country of Portugal (just one medal in Canoe-Kayak in Londo 2012).
    
Tijana Bogdanovic: The first gold medal for Serbia in women
Tijana Bogdanovic won the first gold medal for Serbia at the European Championships in women's level. In the semifinals of -49 kilos, Bogdanovic, left out of the finals the three times European champion and holder of the bronze medal at the London Olympics Lucy Zaninovic, while the final beat the 7-0 Ana Petrusic from Slovenia.
«I am thrilled! Before the final I knew that this would be the first gold for Serbia if you win, which is a historic success for the Serbian taekwondo. It was just an additional motivation », she told.
Women's medals at European Championships for Serbia:
1996: Tanja Grubor silver, bronze Dubravka Boškov
2012: Milica Mandic silver
2014: Milica Mandic silver, bronze Ana Bajic
2015: Tijana Bogdanovic silver
2016: Tijana Bogdanovic gold

Jesus Tortosa Cabrera: «I preferred to gamble to the final"
Jesus Tortosa Cabrera (ESP), admitted he had to gamble to the final against Mourad Laachraoui (BEL), but eventually lost to an opponent who was passionate for gold the medal!
"I have chosen to gamble, this time I went wrong, but I prefer that to not trying. He came forward and expectations of aspiring to gold», told Tortosa to the Spanish media. Tortosa, Joel Gonzalez and Eva Calvo Spain are the hopes for a medal at the Rio Olympics for Spain.
Ron Atias: «I want the gold in Rio"
Ron Atias in Montreux, was defeated 1-0 by Rui Braganca (POR), however in view of Rio 2016 looks very high.
"My goal in Rio is the gold medal," said the Israeli media the eyes that Rio 2016 will take part in a class with 16 athletes (-58kg), which means that the three wins will be enough to ensure a medal.
Ron Atias is the only Israeli taekwondo athlete who will take part in Rio 2016. In Athens 2004 Israel was represented by Maya Arusi, while in Bejing in 2008 by Bat El Gaterer.

KSC Leopard Nürnberg e.V: «You write history again...»
Servet Tazegul and Hamza Adnan-Karim represent different countries (Turkey and Germany respectively), but both of them have something in common: the club where they fight (KSC Leopard Nürnberg e.V). In the facebook page of the club have been uploaded many photos of the two athletes, both on and off the field, commenting:
"The important thing for us is that both are healthy and will leave the tournament without injury. Both gold and silver medal belong to the Leopards. Congratulations to both. The Leopards writes history again».

Problems with Ketbi in Belgium?
The Belgians are in dilemma about leaving Si Mohamed Ketbi (BEL) outside Rio 2016, or not. According to the Belgian media, the holder of the silver medal in 2015 in Chelyabinsk, faces intense problems with his weight, thus he will be unable to fight in -58 kg. Ketbi, since he has participated not even once this year at -58 pounds (in 2016 had three medals in the -63 kg), while he is absent from European Championship which is underway in Montreux, Switzerland. As Belgian media announce, Salaheddine Bensaleh (BEL), No. 13 in the world, will be the first choice for Rio, if there are issues about the participation of Ketbi.
"Ketbi has not fought in his class since December. I just want the best to go to Rio, "said Laurence Race, sports coordinator in the National Taekwondo team.

Presidential congratulations for Servet Tazegul
Servet Tazegul received congratulations from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a few hours after winning the gold medal at the European Championships which is underway in Montreux, Switzerland. Mr. Erdogan contacted by telephone with the president of the Turkish Federation of Taekwondo, Metin Sahin and congratulated him on the feat of the Turk athlete. The «Cheetah», as is his nickname, after the completion of the final against of Hamza Adnan-Karim (GER), saluted militarily and made his victory lap waving the Turkish flag.
Bear in mind that Tazegul equaled the record of Geremia Di Constanzo (ITA) with five gold medals at the European Championship men. Tazegul indeed has even taken five consecutive ones, unlike Di Constanzo, who made a break in 1986 (winning bronze) before returning to gold in 1988.

Jade Jones: «I feel on top of the world»
For Jade Jones, winning the gold medal at Montreux 2016 was a lifelong dream, especially since this particular event is the final rehearsal of her participation in the Rio Olympics.
«The road to Rio has been harder than it was to London. So, to tick this title off my list before getting there, I feel on top of the world », said the athlete from Manchester. «I feel like this was mentally tougher than the European Games last year in Baku, I did not really know much about it but with this it's something I've really wanted to win for a long time», told the media of her country.
The No-1 in World rankings and a holder of the gold medal at the London Olympics was  twice bronze (2010, 2012) and once silver (2014) in the three previous editions of the European Championships.

Parallel Roads for Zaninovic - Minin brothers
Parallel roads, both in medals and the final rankings, are followed by Zaninovic and Minin families in the European Championships in Montreux. Lucija Zaninovic (CRO) won the bronze medal in the -49kg category, while her sister, Ana, was limited to the 5th place of -53kg. Accordingly, Konstantin Minin (RUS) came third in the -68kg, while his brother Vlacheslav, fifth in the -68kg. At least both families did not leave from Switzerland disappointed!

 

 


                                Montreux, 20 MAY 2016

History was written today by Servet Tazegul (TUR) in the ETU European Taekwondo Championships Montreu in Switzerland. Today, the holder of two Olympic medals in London (2012) and Beijing (2008), achieved having  five gold medals (all in a row) – happening for the 2nd time  in the history of the games and therefore, he equals the record for most first places that Geremia Di Constanzo (ITA) held since 1988.

At the same time she was found among the first 11 of athletes that have won five medals (regardless of color) in European Championships.

Apart from Tazegul, Jade Jones (GBR) managed to make her dream come true and after three failed attempts at previous European Championships, she was finally found the highest step of the podium.

Elsewhere, Jaouad Achab (BEL) seems to have no opponent in -63kg since after World gold medal in Chelyabinsk and the European gold medal in Baku, he managed to be found again at the top of the category of -63 kg.

Further information:
In the -53kg category Tatiana Kudashova (RUS), after overcoming the huge barrier of Ana Zaninovic (CRO, No.-2 in World Ranking) in the quarterfinals, managed to win the gold medal with a 4-3 win over Patima Abakarova (AZE). The latter, apparently for tactical reasons (due to its participation in Rio 2016), last minute changed category, but that did not stop to find the podium of the victorious. The third place was taken by Zeliha Agris (TUR) and Floriane Liborio (FRA).

In -57kg category, Jade Jones (GBR) was the big favorite for the gold medal and confirmed that in the best way. She scored two emphatic wins against Martina Zubcic (CRO) in the semifinal 7-5 and Nikita Glasnovic (SWE) in the final by a score of 11-5. This was the first gold medal at the European Championships for the holder of the Olympic gold medal in London. In 2014 in Baku she was second but this time she performed better, leaving many promises in view of Rio 2016.

Regarding Glasnovic, it was likely that she ran out of breath after the great victory over Raheleh Asemani (BEL) in the semifinal (5- 4). The latter, in its first appearance in a major tournament under the colors of Belgium was limited to the third place along with Martina Zubcic (CRO).

In men and the -63 kg category, Jaouad Achab (BEL) had no problems to reach the second gold medal at the European Championship after that in Baku 2014. In the final, Achab defeated 8-2 the surprise performer of the category, Jaroslaw Mecmajer (POL). The Pole reached the final leaving out the holder of the Olympic gold medal in London 2012, Joel Gonzalez Bonilla (ESP), prevailing 6-1 in the semifinals. In the third place, besides Gonzalez Bonilla was also found Stevens Barclais (FRA).

In the category with the most athlete’s appearances (35 in total), the -68kg one, Servet Tazegul was the ultimate. In the final he won 6-5 against an interapid Hamza Adnan-Karim (GER) and added his name to the top of the list of athletes with the most gold medals in history (total of five). The gold medal came seconds before the completion of the fight, since the German proved a tough opponent.

Adnan-Karim was ahead by 3-0 and 5-3, but about 10 seconds before the end Tazegul got three points, the victory and the fifth gold medal of his career in European Championship of men. In the third place were Sergey Vardazaryan (ARM) and Konstantin Minin. Noteworthy of the second day was the conquest by Armenia of its second medal in the European Championships and also the impressive victory of the unknown -until before few hours; Stavroula Kontou(GRE) over the former owner of the title, Eva Calvo Gomez (ESP).

Winners of Day 2
SENIORS FEMALE A -53 (25 competitors)
FINAL: Kudashova, Tatiana (RUS) - Abakarova, Patimat (AZE) 4-3
1. Tatiana Kudashova (RUS)
2. Patimat Abakarova (AZE)
3. Zeliha Agris (TUR)
3. Floriane Liborio (FRA)


SENIORS FEMALE A -57 (26 competitors)
FINAL: Jones, Jade (GBR) - Glasnovic, Nikita (SWE) 11-5
1. Jade Jones (GBR)
2. Nikita Glasnovic (SWE)
3. Raheleh Asemani (BEL)
3. Martina Zubcic (CRO)

SENIORS MALE A -63 (30 competitors)
FINAL: Achab, Jaouad - Mecmajer, Jaroslaw 8-2 On points
1. Jaouad Achab (BEL)
2. Jaroslaw Mecmajer (POL)
3. Stevens Barclais (FRA)
3. Joel Gonzalez Bonilla (ESP)
SENIORS MALE A -68 (35 competitors)
FINAL: Tazegul, Servet - Adnan-Karim, Hamza 6-5
1. Servet Tazegul (TUR)
2. Hamza Adnan-Karim (GER)
3. Sergey Vardazaryan (ARM)
3. Konstantin Minin (RUS)

MEDAL STANDINGS (after 2nd day)
BELGIUM 2-0- 1, RUSSIA 1-0- 5, TURKEY 1-0- 2, GREAT BRITAIN 1-0- 1,
UKRAINE 1-0- 0, SERBIA 1-0- 0, PORTUGAL 1-0- 0, SPAIN 0-2- 1, POLAND 0-1-
0, GERMANY 0-1- 0, AZERBAIJAN 0-1- 0, SWEDEN 0-1- 0, ISRAEL 0-1- 0,
SLOVENIA 0-1- 0, FRANCE 0-0- 3, CROATIA 0-0- 2, ARMENIA 0-0- 1.

STATEMENTS
Kudashova Tatiana (RUS): “The Final against Patimat was a really tough game. I am extremely glad and proud that I won this fight and reaching the top by becoming a gold medalist, so happy that I finally achieved my goals for these Championships”.
Jade Jones (GBR): “It needs hard work in order to succeed and I am certainly proud and happy for becoming European Champion in Montreux, prior the Olympic Games in Rio. Actually, these games were an excellent chance to become even better and get well prepared for the Olympic Games Rio 2016 and my great goal- a gold medal”.

Achab Jaouad (BEL): “I tried to fight hard and give all I got, I was concentrated to do my best and now I am so happy and satisfied for winning the gold medal, like I did during the European Championships in 2014. But I won’t stop here, I will continue hard working and hope that the future will be successful for me as until now”. Tazegul Servet (TUR): “Right now I feel so wonderful, I feel great because this is my 5 th European gold medal. Now, the next stop for me will be the Olympic Games Rio 2016, where I will do my best and of course my goal is another Olympic medal”.

 

 

 

 

                                Montreux, 20 MAY 2016


FEMALES - 73 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 17 athletes - 15 countries
* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Iva Rados (CRO), 2nd place: Milica Mandic (SRB), 3rd place: Aleksandra Krzemieniecka (POL), Furkan Asena Aydin (TUR)
* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKING: Milica Mandic (SRB) No-2
* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT CUP: Petra Matijasevic (MKD), Reshmie Oogink (NED), Anastasia Gurskaia (RUS), Seyma Sogut (TUR)
* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Reshmie Oogink (NED) has five in 2016, the most important one that brought her in Rio 2016. This is the silver medal won at the Olympic Games Qualification Europe Tournament in Istanbul. He has won four gold medals in Fujairah Open (+ 73kg), Luxor Open (+ 73kg), Dutch Open (-73kg) and the World President's Cup (-73kg).

* WHAT WE WILL SEE:
The gold medal will be contested between six athletes. First on the list is Iva Rados (CRO), which holds the No.-4 in thebWorld Rankings, holds the title of the Baku 2014, while last year's World Championships she was third (she was the only European who stepped on podium in that category) . In last year's final she beat Milica Mandic (SRB), which is the second of the relevant list, by 6-3. The athlete from Serbia, has got two silver medals at the European Championships, since added to what she got in 2014, she was also second and Manchester in 2012 (he was beaten 4-3 by Russian Anastasia Baryshnikova). Mandic, who is the only athlete from this category having a gold medal in the Olympic Games (London 2012), is the No.-2 World Ranking by which she qualified for Rio 2016.
Tuesday's candidate for the gold medal is Tina Skaar (NOR, No. 21). She qualified for the Rio Olympics through the Qualification Tournament in Turkey, as did Mandic. She possesses no medals at the European Championships, but is one of the athletes who know how to come out a winner. She did so with her personal life when diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME). Not only did she not give up, but went to Constantinople and took the gold medal and qualification for Rio.
The last two members of the list is the No-10 of the World Rankings, Aleksanda Krzemieniecka (POL), Yanna Scheider (GER) Petra Matijasevic (MKD). The athlete from Poland was third in 2014 in Baku, Scheider (Nov-8) has four medals this year with last in Germany, while Matijasevic (No-9) to 2012 was third at the European championship of Manchester in the -67kg category.

FEMALES +73 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 13 athletes - 12 countries
* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Bianca Walkden (GBR), 2nd place: Olga Ivanova (RUS), 3rd place: Ana Bajic (SRB), Rosana Simon Alamo (ESP).
* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKING: Bianca Walkden (GBR) No-1
* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT'S CUP: Melan Adamic Golic (CRO), Bianca Walkden (GBR), Ana Bajic (SRB), Rosanna Simon Alamo (ESP)
* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Lorena Brandl (GER) has won one gold and three bronze medals this year. At the Belgian Open he won the gold medal, and was also third in Turkish Open, Fujairah Open and Luxor Open, always in the category of 73 kg.

* WHAT WE WILL SEE:
The category of 73 kg will be held without the owner of most medals at European Championships,Gwladys Epangue (FRA). Epangue is recovering from injury, as to prepare for the Rio Olympics. Thus, the chase for the gold medal has now five nominations, the most important being Bianca Walkden (GBR). Walkden is No.-1 in the World Rankings. In 2014 she took the gold at the European Championship, while a year later she was also crowned a world champion in Chelyabinsk. He has gotten to qualify for the Rio Olympics through the World Rankings. Bear in mind that in 2015 Walkden became only the second Briton to win a world title after Sarah Stevenson in 2001 and 2011, and the third one to win a global title after Stevenson and Jade Jones' Olympic success in 2012.
Second in Baku in 2014 and third in 2015 Chelyabinsk was Olga Ivanova. She is in No-5 of the World Rankings. Included to her CV is a gold medal in the world championships of 2013 in Puebla and a bronze at the European Championships 2012 in Manchester. Last January he tried to get the qualification for Rio, but in the semifinals she was defeated 1-0 by Tina Skaar (NOR) thereby reduced to the bronze medal and therefore outside Rio 2016.
Serious candidates for gold are also Ana Bajic (SRB), Rosanna Simon Alamo (ESP) and Nafia Kus (TUR). Bajic was third at Baku 2014, Simon Alamo was third (in her palmare there are a total of four medals at women European Championships), while Kus except the bronze medal in the Chelyabinsk World Championship she was also first in the European Championships Olympic Categories in Russia's 2015 in the + 67kg category.

MALES -87 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 24 athletes - 23 countries
* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Radik Isayev (AZE), 2nd place: M`Bar N`Diaye (FRA), Lutalo Muhammad (GBR), Ali Sari (TUR)
* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKINGS: Radik Isayev (AZE) No-2
* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT'S CUP: Mohammed Elhatri (NOR), Daniel Ros Gomez (ESP), Drasko Jovanov (SRB).
* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Mohammed Elhatri (NOR), was not found on top in any event in 2016 until now, but came close twice. In Fujairah Open was second as was in the World President's Cup. Also, in the Turkish Open he won 3rd place.

* WHAT WE WILL SEE:
Among the medallists of Baku 2014 only M`Bar N`Diaye takes part (Radin Isayev(AZE) participates in the + 87kg category). The athlete from France, was second in the European Championships in Azerbaijan, after the defeat by Radik Isayev (AZE). The latter decided to fight in a heavier category compared to Baku.
Apart from N`Diaye, favorites for a medal also are Arman Yeremyan (ARM), Alexander Bachmann (GER), Vladislav Larin (RUS), while the leading role, despite the change of category, is expected to be played by Damon Sansum (GBR).Yeremyan, a European champion in 2008 in Rome, last year managed to find himself among the top three winners of the European Championships Olympic Categories. More specifically, after the defeat by Yunus Sari (TUR) in the final of -80kg he achieved second place and won the silver medal. Bachmann is found on no 4 of the the World Rankings (during 2016 he has won three medals in various Open), while Larin (No-6) was third in the World Championships of Chelyabinsk and in the European Championships Olympic Categories in Russia he was second at + 80kg. As for Sansum, he was second in the World Championships of 2015 in Chelyabinsk -80kg and also second in the European Champiosnhips of Baku two years ago, again in the -80kg category.

MALES +87 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 18 athletes - 16 countries
* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Arman Marshall Silla (BLR), 2nd place: Verdan Golec (CRO), 3rd place: Leonardo Basie (ITA), Volker Wodzich (GER)
* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKING: Mahama Cho (GBR) No-6
* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT'S CUP: Arman Marshall Silla (BLR), Mahama Cho (GBR), Roman Kuznetsov (RUS)
* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Omar El Yazidi (FRA) has swept the medals in 2016. He has six overall, but no gold. He was second in the Turkish and Ukraine Open, and was found in the third step of the podium of winners in Fujairah Open, Belgian Open, Spanish Open and most recently at the German Open.

* WHAT WE WILL SEE:
Three of the four athletes who will come to Rio for the Olympic category of 80 kg are engaged in the heaviest category of the European Championship Montreux 2016. These are Mahama Cho (GBR), Radik Isaev (AZE) and Arman Marshall Silla (BLR).
Cho, No.-6 in the World Rankings, managed to get the qualification for Rio via the Qualification Tournament in Turkey, where he was ranked first. Isaev is the world champion of 2015 in Chelyabinsk in -87kg, a European champion 2014 in Baku in the -87kg category, and second in the European Championships Olympic Categories Russia in + 80kg. He is now located in Nov-13 of the World Rankings.
Marshall Silla is the third of this group of athletes who will travel to Rio. Located at No.-9 World Rankings he is the title holder of the Baku 2014, while in 2016 he was second in both the Qualification Tournament of Turkey and the World President's Cup in Germany.
An important role in the case of medals will also be played by Vedran Golec (CRO, No-7), Omar El Yazidi (FRA, No-14) and Ivan Trajkovic (SLO, No-15). Golec was second in Baku 2014 and third last year at the European Championships Olympic Categories, while El Yazidi is in excellent form as was shown in the tournament he had participated from the beginning of the year. Trajkovic, although unable to qualify for the Rio Olympics (he was ranked third), has considerable experience of big games and his palmare among others contains a world medal in Puebla 2013 and two European ones including the one he got four years ago in Manchester.

 

        

 

 

Montreux, 19 MAY 2016

Portugal, Belgium, Serbia and Ukraine are the first four countries found in the top positions of the podium of the winners at the premiere of the 22th European Taekwondo Championships hosted in Montreux, Switzerland. Rui Braganca (POR), the leading name of the category of -58kg and one of the favorites to win a medal at the Rio Olympics, needed the process of golden point in order to bend Ron Atias' resistance (ISR) in the final. In contrast, Tijana Bogdanovic (SRB), who will also be present in the summer 2016 in Rio defeated Ana Petrusic with relative ease (7-0) (SLO) to the end of -46kg category.

Iryna Romoldanova (UKR), after getting her revenge in the semi-final of -46kg against Hajer Mustapha for the defeat in the final of the Baku 2014, reached the gold medal after her victory over Blanca Palmer Soler (ESP) by 3- 0. Regarding the -54kg category,Mourad Laachraoui (BEL), one of the people who a few months ago had involuntarily been in the limelight because of his brother's relationship to terrorism, won his first medal in big event. It colour was gold after his final win by 6-3 against Jesus Tortosa Cabrera (ESP), son of Jesus Tortosa Alameda who apart from winning three gold medals in European Championships, he had also participated in the Olympic Games of 1988 in Seoul.

The results of the finals and final places:
Male-A -58 kg

FINAL: Braganca, Rui (POR) -Atias, Ron (ISR) 1-0 Golden point
1st place: Rui Braganca (POR)
2nd place: Ron Atias (ISR)
3rd place: Feyi Pearce (GBR)
3rd place: Ruslan Poiseev (RUS)

Male-A -54 kg
FINAL: Tortosa Cabrera, Jesus (ESP) -Laachraoui, Mourad (BEL) 3-6
1st place: Laachraoui, Mourad (BEL)
2nd place: Tortosa Cabrera, Jesus (ESP)
3rd place: Denisov, Stanislav (RUS)
3rd place: Artamonov, Mikhail (RUS)


Female-A -49 kg
FINAL: Petrusic, Ana (SLO) -Bogdanovic, Tijana (SRB) 0-7
1st place: Tijana Bogdanovic (SRB)
2nd place: Ana Petrusic (SLO)
3rd place: Alexandra Lychagina (RUS)
3rd place: Lucija Zaninovic (CRO)

Female-A -46 kg
FINAL: Palmer Soler, Blanca (ESP) -Romoldanova, Iryna (UKR) 0-3
1st place: Romoldanova, Iryna (UKR)
2nd place: Palmer Soler, Blanca (ESP)
3rd place: Mustapha, Hajer (FRA)
3rd place: Yildirim, Rukiye (TUR)

MEDAL STANDINGS (after 1st day):
Ukraine 1-0-0, Serbia 1-0-0, Belgium 1-0-0, Portugal 1-0-0, Spain 0-2-0, Israel 0-1-0, slovenia 0-1-0, Russia 0-0-4, Great Britain 0-0-1, France 0-0-1, Turkey 0-0-1, Croatia 0-0-1

STATEMENTS
Bogdanovic Tijana: «I am so glad for this win and I feel so nice since this is my first gold medal in European Senior Championships and it makes me feel so happy. I hope that my teammates will do the same tomorrow, we support each other so much, the team spirit in our team is so powerful and when we do or say something it is for the whole team because we have a strong bond. This Championship is definitely huge experience for me and an excellent opportunity to prepare for the Olympic Games in Rio 2016, where I will do my best and try to win an Olympic medal ».

Rui Braganca: «I feel so amazing, I am really happy for winning this medal, it was a hard fight and I did not believe I could make it again, since is the second time this has happened... my first medal was in Baku two years ago and I am really glad that I made it again. This championship was a huge challenge for me, I gained and I learned many elements that are going to help my preparation for the Olympic Games in Rio 2016 ».

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                Montreux, 19 MAY 2016


Today, Thursday May 19 2016, the ETU European Taekwondo Championships Montreux 2016 was launched, in Salle Omnisport du Pierrer, in Montreux Switzerland.


As a general rehearsal for the Olympic Games Rio 2016, the event is the milestone competition prior to the Games.


In the three out of the four weigh categories, the favorable names for a title (Kyriaki Kouttouki -46kg, Yasmina Aziez -49kg, Jack Wooley -54kg) were disqualified before the semi-finals. The only exception was Rui Braganca (POR), who will be one of the final competitors for a gold medal, making him second time in a row a European Gold Champion (first being in Baku 2014).


In the Male -58kg weigh category, three out of four athletes of the finals will compete in Olympic Games Rio 2016. Levent Tuncat (GER), holder of four (4) medals in European championships (3 gold), will remain out of the finals, since he was defeated by Feyi Pearce (GBR), who was stopped during the semi-finals by Ron Atias (ISR).

Atias will compete with Rui Braganca, European champion in Baku 2016.

Ruslan Poiseev (RUS) also came third in his weigh category.

Mourad Laachraoui (BEL) (male -54) qualified to the finals, after winning Sanislav Denisov (RUS) in the semi-finals and he will compete for his first medal in a European Championship against Jesus Tortosa Cabrera (ESP) (3rd place in Baku 2014), having already qualified for Rio 2016.

Mikhail Artamonov has also come in the third place, increasing the Russian medals.


In female -49 weigh category, Ana Petrusic (SLO) won Yasina Aziez (FRA) and qualified for the finals aftes her victory against Alexandra Lychagina (RUS). Petrusic will compete with Tijana Bogdanivic (SRB) during the finals. Bogdanovic qualified to the finals after winning Lucija Zaninovic (CRO) who holds three (3) gold medals in the respective championships. Yet both Zaninovic and Lychagina will have a place the podium.


Finally, in the weigh category female -46, Iryna Romoldonova (UKR) will claim once again the gold medal. She got herself to the finals after winning Blanca Palmer Soler (ESP) who left outside Kyriaki Kouttouki (CYP) and Rukiye Yildirim (TUR). Yildirim and Mustapha will “share” the third place.

 

 

 

EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS, MONTREUX 2016
CATEGORIES: FEMALES -62 & -67 kg / MALES -74 & -80 kg

                                Montreux, 19 MAY 2016



FEMALES - 62 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 24 athletes - 21 countries


* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Nina Klay (SUI), 2nd place: Marina Sumic (CRO), 3rd place: Rabia Gulec (TUR), Magda Wiet- Henin (FRA).


* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKING: Irem Yaman (TUR) No-1


* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT CUP: Rachelle Booth (GBR), Daniela Rotolo (ITA), Tugba Ayva (TUR), Irem Yaman (TUR).


* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Six athletes have won three medals in 2016. These are Magda Wiet Henin (FRA), Rabia Gulec (GER), Bat-El Gatterer (ISR), Ana Ciuchitu (MDA), Joyce Van Baaren (NED) and Irem Yaman (TUR). One of them, Ciuchitu found herself very close to qualifying for the Olympics, but she was limited to third place in the Olympic Games Qualification Europe Tournament held in Istanbul.


* WHAT WE WILL SEE:
 

From the few categories where the Baku 2014 medal winners will be found in Montreux. It's the title holder Nina Klay (SUI), the second ranking Marina Sumic (CRO), Magda Wiet Henin (FRA) and Rabia Gulec (GER) who was found in the third step of the podium.


Klay is one of the two representatives of Switzerland for the event of Montreux, located at No.-7 of the World Rankings. In her resume, except the gold medal in Baku two years ago, has among others a silver in 2006 in Bonn and a bronze in the World Championships of 2013 in Puebla.


Sumic, No.-3 in the World Rankings, was second in the last two European Championships. In Baku she was defeated by Klay 5-3 while two years earlier had lost 11-6 to Marlene Harnois (FRA). At the European Championships Olympic Categories 2015 in Russia she was third, while included in her CV is a silver medal at the World Championships 2011 in Gyeongju.


Henin is located at No. 9 of the World Rankings, while two positions higher (7th) is Gulec. The representative of Germany, during the Olympic Games Qualification Europe Tournament in January, was second in the -69kg, a position which automatically gave her qualification for the Rio Olympics.


It's true that the four above were found on the podium of the Baku 2014, but there are also three other athletes who although have not celebrated a European title
in women's level, they have been found in the podium of the World Championship in Chelyabinsk and very high in the world rankings. First and foremost, Irem Yaman (TUR), who won the gold medal in the Russian event and currently No.-1 in the World Ranking. A position further down in the rankings of WTF and organization of Chelyabinsk is Marta Calvo Gomez (ESP), while among the favorites for a medal is also Rachelle Booth (GBR), being third last year in the Russian event.

FEMALES -67kg

* PARTICIPATION: 23 athletes - 22 countries


* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Anastasiia Baryshnikova (RUS), 2nd place: Haby Niare (FRA), 3rd place: Nur Tatar (TUR), Farida Azizova (AZE)


* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKINGS: Haby NIARE (FRA) No-1


* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT CUP: Matea Jelic (CRO), Haby Niare (FRA), Nur Tatar (TUR), Simge Erensayin (TUR), Tetiana Tetereviatnykova (UKR ).
* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Elin Johansson (SWE), No-2 in the World Ranking, has won four medals so far this year. She was first in the Canadian Open, second at the US Open, third at both Luxor Open and Qatar Open in the category of -67kg.

 

* WHAT WE WILL SEE:

Out of 23 athletes participating in the class, five will be found in the summer in Rio 2016. Among other things, the four athletes found the podium of Baku 2014 will be present in Montreux 2016.


The title holder is Anastasiia Baryshnikova (RUS). She has achieved three consecutive gold medals, but the first two (St. Petersburg 2010, Manchester 2012) in the -73kg category. The bronze medalist of 2012, is No.-4 in World Ranking through which she qualified for Rio 2016. In the final category two years ago in Baku she defeated Haby Niare (FRA) by 3-2.


Niare is the No.-1 in the World Rankings. Like Baryshnikova, the French athlete has been three consecutive times to the podium, she was first in 2010 in the -62kg, second in 2012 in the -67kg, and also second in Baku.


At the Rio Olympics through the Qualification Tournament will also participate Farida Azizova (AZE), another favorite to win the gold in Montreux. Azizova is No. 9 in the World Rankings, while in her curriculum, among other things, she has a bronze medal at the 2013 World Championships in Puebla.


Nur Tatar (TUR), the holder of the silver medal at the London Olympics in 2012, has all three kinds of medals, the last three being in the European Championships (in -67kg).In 2010 she was second, in 2012 first, and in 2014 was third. Tatar, No.-5 in the World Ranking, was the only European representative in the top three of the World Championships in Chelyabinsk, occupying the second place.


In Rio will also travel Elin Johansson (SWE). The No-2 in World Rankings, the European Championships Olympic Categories 2015 was found on the highest step of the podium victorious. In terms of European Championships Women in 2008, she was third in the -59kg, while in 2012 she was also third in the -67kg.

MALES - 74 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 33 athletes - 30 countries


* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Albert Gaun (RUS), 2nd place: Torann Maizeroi (FRA), 3rd place: Ilkin Sahbazov (AZE), Andrew Deer (GBR).


* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKING: Julio Ferreira (POR) No-5 * QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT'S CUP: Said Guliyev (AZE), Toni Kanaet (CRO), Damir Fejzic (SRB), Berkcan Sungu (TUR).


* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Nicholas Corten (BEL) is the athlete with the best harvest of medals this year. Corten has won a gold (the US Open) and three bronze medals (Fujairah Open, Luxor Open, German Open).


* WHAT WE WILL SEE:

Once the title holder Albert Gaun decided to fight in the -80 kg category in which he participates also during the Rio Olympics, the chase for the gold medal became complicated. Based on the numbers, the favorites for a place in the podium are Damir Fejciz (SRB), Berkcan Sungu (TUR), Daniel Quesada Barrera (ESP), Julio Ferreira (POR), Toni Kanaet (CRO) and Nicholas Corten (BEL).


The best place in the World Rankings belongs to Ferreira (Nov-5). Last year in the European Games in Baku he was third, while his palmare includes three European titles, but none in men's level.


Kanaet is located at No.-11 of the World Rankings. Recently he was second in the World Presidents Cup, and earlier this year he won the gold medal in both the Slovenian and Ukrainian Open.


In No. 12 is found Damir Fejzic (SRB). Fejzic was first in the corresponding category of the World President's Cup, but third in the Olympic Games Qualification Europe Tournament, thereby he lost the qualification for the Olympics.


Sangu has many achievements in the European Championships of lesser categories, and also has a bronze medal in the Olympic Youth Games held in Singapore in 2010. This year, in addition to the World Presidents Cup, he was second in the Turkish Open in the category of -74 kg. He is found in the 80th position of the World Rankings.


Five titles in European Championships categories also has Daniel Quesada Barrera (ESP). Quesada, No-35, in addition to all the other gold medals, was a world champion in 2012 World Championships Youth of Sharm El-Sheikh in the category of -68kg.


In No. 20 of the World Rankings, mainly because of this years of racing performance is found Corten, while in No.-16 is Teodor Georgiev (BUL), who in 2016 was found in the second position of Dutch Open.


MALES - 80 kg

* PARTICIPATION: 25 athletes - 23 countries


* EUROPEAN WINNERS 2014 (BAKU): 1st place: Aaron Cook (ISM), 2nd place: Damon Sansum (GBR), 3rd place: Mamedy Doucara (FRA), Ramin Azizov (AZE).


* HIGHEST POSITION IN WORLD RANKING: Aaron Cook (MDA) No-2


* QUALIFICATION FROM WORLD PRESIDENT CUP: Milad Beigi Harchegani (AZE), Aaron Cook (MDA), Raul Martinez Garcia (ESP), Yunus Sari (TUR).


* MOST MEDALS IN 2016: Richard Andre Ordemann (NOR) and Yunus Sari (TUR) have four medals in their possession in 2016. Another thing they have in common is that they both reached the semifinals of the Olympic Games Qualification Tournament Istanbul, however their 3rd position left them outside of the Olympic Games.


* WHAT WE WILL SEE:

All six European athletes of the category of -80 kg, who have taken qualify for Rio 2016, came to Montreux, which portends interesting 'duels'. Nomination for winning the gold medal have set Milad Beigi Harchegani (AZE), Lutalo Muhammad (GBR), Tahir Guelec (GER), Piotr Pazinski (POL), Albert Gaun (RUS) and of course Aaron Cook (MDA). If the latter wins the gold medal, it will be the fourth of his career at the European Championship with three different countries, having won medals both for Great Britain and the Isle of Man, always in the category of -80kg. In the end of 2010, in St. Petersburg (then GBR), Cook beat Nikolaos Tzellos (GRE) with a score of 11-10, while two years later in Manchester, again under M. Britain colours defeated Ramin Azizo.


In Baku he fought under the colours of the Isle of Man and in the final he defeated Damon Sansum (GBR) 1-0. This year he fought with the colours of Moldova, under which he already has two medals this year at the World Presidents Cup (3rd) and German Open (2nd). Globally (men), the No-2 of the World Ranking, was third last year in Chelyabinsk.


Beigi Harchegani is No-13 in the World Rankings. He got the qualification for Rio via the Qualification Tournament (gold medal), and a few weeks ago in Bonn, he beat Cook by 13-2 and topped the World Presidents Cup in the category of -80 kg.


Muhammad is a holder of a medal at the Olympics, since in 2012 London was second. He has two medals to his collection in European Championships, but all in the category of -87 kg (gold in Manchester, bronze in Baku). He is located in the 6th place of the World Rankings.


Guelec, No.-5 in the World Rankings, was third last year in the World Championship of Chelyabinsk. He secured his qualification for Rio thanks to his Olympic Ranking. Unlike Guelec, Pazinski got the qualification for the Olympic Games through the Qualification Tournament where he ranked second. He is the No-16 of the World Rankings. Regarding Gaun, European champion 2014 in the -74kg, possesses a third place in the World Championship of Chelyabinsk and also a 3rd place at the European Championships Olympic Categories. In the 2015 European Games in Baku he was second.


Besides the athletes who will travel in the summer in Brazil, an important role regarding medals is expected to be played by Yunus Sari (TUR), first in 2015 at the European Championships Olympic Categories and Ramin Azizov (AZE) who was third two years ago in the European championships of Baku.


The program of the third day:
08:30-14:00 Preliminary Round - Quarterfinals - Semifinals
17:00-18:20 Finals
 Medal Ceremonies

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