Date set for taek­wondo ex­trav­a­ganza

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Mikia Kalati

THE sec­ond edi­tion of the Korean am­bas­sador Cup tour­na­ment takes place in Maseru on 30 Novem­ber.

In an in­ter­view, the Le­sotho Taek­wondo As­so­ci­a­tion (LTA) pres­i­dent, Moshoeshoe Mokake, told the Le­sotho Times the com­pe­ti­tion, which was launched last year, is ex­pected to go ahead this time around fol­low­ing its post­pone­ment last month due to the coun­try’s po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity pre­vail­ing at that time.

The un­rest saw na­tions which had been ex­pected to be part of the event, with­draw­ing their par­tic­i­pa­tion, as they feared for their play­ers’ safety.

“We were sup­posed to hold the sec­ond edi- tion of the com­pe­ti­tion last month, but had to post­pone as other coun­tries with­drew their par­tic­i­pa­tion due to the po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity in our coun­try at the time,” Mokake said.

“Taek­wondo has been get­ting a lot of support from the repub­lic of Korea hence the com­pe­ti­tion has been named in hon­our of the coun­try’s am­bas­sador to our coun­try.”

Mokake fur­ther said the repub­lic of Korea has played a mas­sive role in the re­vival of the sport in Le­sotho.

Taek­wondo was once a dom­i­nant sport in Le­sotho in the 1990s due to the support of the Kore­ans, whose coaches would train lo­cals through part­ner­ship with the Le­sotho De­fence Force.

“We had to go back to the draw­ing board and it was then that we de­cided to en­gage the Kore­ans as well as other stake­hold­ers who were very in­flu­en­tial when the sport was do­ing well way back (in the 1990s) in our coun­try,” said Mokake.

“Through our part­ner­ship with the Kore­ans, we have man­aged to hold coach­ing cour­ses for our peo­ple, which has helped us pro­duce good taek­wondo play­ers once again.

“Last year, we had four south­ern african coun­tries (Swazi­land, Mozam­bique, Botswana, South Africa) tak­ing part in the Korean am­bas­sador Cup tour­na­ment, in­clud­ing us as the hosts, and we ex­pected the tour­na­ment to be big­ger this time around.

“There had been im­mense in­ter­est from West african coun­tries, but that was spoiled by the po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity in our coun­try.”

“How­ever, we be­lieve this com­pe­ti­tion will con­tinue to help the re­vival of the sport the way it did last year.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Lesotho

© PressReader. All rights reserved.