Max makes Taek­wondo club his­tory with mer­ited pro­mo­tion

Teen, now a black belt 2nd Dan, shows off his tal­ent with club-mates in medal-win­ning per­for­mances

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - SPORT - by Jon Batham tms-sport@trin­i­tymir­

TEENAGER Max Whit­ley re-wrote Che­sham Taek­wondo Club’s record books re­cently.

The 14-year-old was pro­moted to black belt 2nd Dan af­ter gain­ing the only merit pass award from the Bri­tish United Taek­wondo Fed­er­a­tion, mak­ing him the youngest per­son to achieve such a level in the club’s his­tory.

Coached by his fa­ther Keith, he is also the youngest to at­tain the stan­dard in his dad’s 32 years as an in­struc­tor, so clearly he is a chip off the old block.

Whit­ley’s re­cent achieve­ments do not end with this record-break­ing ef­fort though. His re­cent ap­pear­ance at the PUMA English Open, one of the most pres­ti­gious events on the cir­cuit, saw him take gold in the ju­nior pat­terns event and bronze in spar­ring – this suc­cess com­ing in the wake of another gold in the Ju­nior Black Belt Pat­terns at the BUTF Cup tour­na­ment in Hat­field, where club­mate Lewis Swal­low was a close sec­ond.

Whit­ley also got the bet­ter of fel­low 14-year-old Swal­low in the spar­ring com­pe­ti­tion at the above tour­na­ment.

The Hat­field event proved fruit­ful for two more club mem­bers, sib­lings 16-year-old Ge­orge Han­chant and his sis­ter Jas­min, a year his ju­nior. Ge­orge took gold in his pat­tern class and bronze in the spar­ring, the lat­ter af­ter a some­what bloody semi-fi­nal, while Jas­min won the adult ladies pat­tern event and took sil­ver in spar­ring.

Ge­orge car­ried this form into the afore­men­tioned English Open where he again took gold in the pat­terns and sil­ver in spar­ring, Jas­min set­tling for bronze in the lat­ter af­ter un­luck­ily los­ing to the even­tual win­ner in the first round of the pat­terns.

The Han­chants and Swal­low went to Guild­ford to the UKTA Lon­don Open the fol­low­ing week­end, a com­pe­ti­tion Whit­ley was forced to sit out through in­jury.

Jas­min per­formed her pat­tern through sev­eral rounds to the fi­nal but lost on a split de­ci­sion so set­tled for sil­ver, while Ge­orge earned a bronze.

It was a change around with the spar­ring re­sults as Jas­min took bronze while Ge­orge took sil­ver in the 15-17s, Swal­low adding a bronze in the 14-15 age group.

De­served medals: From left, Lewis Swal­low, Max Whit­ley, Jas­min Han­chant and Ge­orge Han­chant.

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