November 2014

It has been a very busy period again for the club, culminating in our International Training Camp in November. We had some notable successes at the British Masters Open Championship and the Southend International in October, which were quickly followed up by our weekend long training camp at the start of November. This again saw clubs from France and Holland attend and, although here was a small local tournament taking place in Medway on the same weekend, which a few club members did attend, the main action for Walderslade judoka was at Greenacre Academy where we had IJF Grand Prix winner and 2014 Commonwealth Games Silver Medallist, Tom Reed as our special guest. Tom, ranked 41 in the world in the -81kgs, practiced with both junior and senior players present and generally enthralled all those in attendance with his skills. This was an opportunity not to be missed.

The randori was good once again, with both the French and Dutch clubs sending some quality judoka to Kent. Although numbers on the mat were down on previous years, with a number of regular Walderslade members missing both on and off the mat, there was still a good crowd and everyone who attended the event enjoyed themselves.

Tom with club members Erin, Thomas, Will, Jordan and George. More photos appear on our club Facebook page.

The evening social event was also a great success and, although a number of important club members were unable to attend, which was really unfortunate, it was still really well organised and a great time was had by all who came along. The games were all well received, especially the Bungee Run. The Kareoke (a traditional Japanese event !) was great fun, but we dont think we will be asking Ranj to take to the mike again in a hurry! Chris however, had his own backing singers at one stage courtesy of Sam and Sharry!

Other competition news recently saw both Liam McDonagh-Brown and Liam Ferguson fighting in the very tough Welsh Open. Here, both young fighters found the competition too tough on this occasion and unfortunately neither came back with a medal.

Lastly, in Kidderminster at the Midland Minimons Tournament, two younger club members came back with two medals each. Erin Baisley took Gold in the U35kg event with some impressive judo and a Bronze as part of the team event afterwards. Thomas Ledger also fought really well and in only his second event picked up a Silver in the U30kg category and also a Bronze in the team event. Both fighters showed real promise and some great skills.

Erin leaves for a new life in South Africa at the start of December, so we hope he keeps up his judo and his competition results when he gets there.

October 2014

The club organised a 2-Day Half Term Judo Course to coincide with World Judo Day on Tuesday 28 October.

The course was held at the Greenacre Academy and saw full class of 30 complete beginners from the age of 5 to 12 try judo for the first time ever.  The clubs’ Coaches were supported by a handful of existing junior club members who came along to help out and be partners to the beginners.  The event was a great success and the youngsters all worked hard throughout the two day event.

Coaches led the group through their break-falls, a number of basic throws and holds and interspersed the judo aspects of each day with a number of ‘Judo Games’ to maintain interest and fun and also set up a series of obstacle courses designed to improve, fitness co-ordination and agility.

The event finished with a team tournament in one of the clubs favourite games ‘Ken Ken Sumo,’ where youngsters hop on one leg, whilst holding the other and try to make their opponent either step outside the area, let go of the held foot or fall over and touch the mat with something other than the sole of their foot.  This produced a lot of noise and excitement, just in time for parents to see the youngsters really enjoying their time at the club.  Background music and the waving of foam hands left over from a Join-In Sport event the club organised in the summer all added to the excitement of the event finale.

During the lunch breaks and as the youngsters arrived each day the schools large screen in the main hall was used to stream exciting footage of judo from major tournaments, which really captured the attention of the youngsters.

Prizes for best effort and behaviour where handed out and everyone left with a foam hand, a World Judo Day diploma and lots of information about the club and its regular classes.  A number of youngsters have already stated their intention to return and have a go at judo within the normal club environment.

Senior Coach, Eddie Orgee, said it had been a wonderful success adding “It has been a very busy few weeks for the club.  We took 5 medals at the British Masters in Kidderminster, followed by three gold and one bronze medal at the Southend International last weekend.  We have a couple of players entered into the Welsh Open this coming weekend and then the weekend after that we have 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games Silver Medallist Tom Reed coming down to lead our annual International Training Camp in Walderslade.  With all that and then our World Judo Day event squeezed in the middle, it has been a hectic but very enjoyable period and the club is really buzzing at the moment”.

Club members reap in the medals

The last few weeks have been a really busy time for Walderslade Judo Club members.  The club saw its largest entry to the British Masters Open Championships in Kidderminster on 18 October, with 5 Walderslade members and two Sittingbourne Judo Club judoka who train with us taking part.

The results were fantastic with those taking part bringing back 5 medals between them and four judoka earning a place in the British Masters Judo Squad because of their medal placing.  A really outstanding result for the club.

Medals were won as follows; Eddie Orgee Gold, Lee Cahalane Gold, Mark Robertson Bronze, Caroline Rawlings Silver and Andy Ladbrook Bronze.  Ranj Atwal had a tough pool and although he put in a really good performance he was just short of a medal position.  Dave Hughes, senior coach at Sittingbourne Judo Club made his first completion appearance for a number of years and put in a brave effort even though he was suffering from injury at the time, but was unable to make the medals.

The following weekend four Walderslade club members were in action at the Southend International in Essex.  Here the club gained another 3 Gold medals and a further Bronze.  Gold medals came from Jack and Charlotte Jenman who both stormed through to the finals in their categories and Lee Cahalane who dispatched the opposition in style once again.  The Bronze came from Mark Robertson in a tough group of +100kg fighters.

The excitement continues in a few weeks when Liam Ferguson and Liam McDonagh-Brown do battle in the Welsh Open in Cardiff.   

July 2014

AGM and social event

On Friday 11 July we held a very successful AGM and social event at the Rochester Kings Sports Centre in Maidstone Road, Rochester.  Many club members came along to support the AGM and more joined us for the social event afterwards and it was great to see so many old and new faces there.

The Committee held a meeting just prior to the AGM and then at the AGM annual reports from the outgoing Chairman, Treasurer and Senior Coach were read and the clubs annual accounts circulated.  The new Committee and Officers of the club were voted upon and can now be confirmed as follows;

Chairman; Chris Riley

Secretary; Sallie Elcome

Treasurer; Eddie Orgee

Committee members; Steve Morris, Ranj Atwal, Zeldine Morris, Ann Kemm, Kerry Barlow

Club Welfare Officer; Sallie Bailsey

This group took the decision that the club's primary aims for the year ahead would be to increase club membership numbers and seek to raise funds for our new permanent Dojo, for which we now have full planning permission. 

June 2014

Kent International Championships 

The very last Kent International Championship took place at Crystal Palace National Sports Centre on 26 & 27 June and it was a really superb event once again.  Walderslade had two fighters in the event, Liam McDonagh Brown and Charlotte Jenman and both of them came away with Gold medals and Kent International titles to show for their hard work and effort.

Liam had an excellent start to the event, his first at this level, and he his first opponent for Ippon with a very nice Ura Nage within the opening minute.  The rest of his contests were also won in style but he had to work hard for the wins against some very experienced young players.

Charlotte was also competing in her first event at this level and won through in style to take Gold. 

Both fighters have worked hard over the last 6 months and that effort certainly paid off at this event.

April 2014

Kent Closed Championship

Sunday 6 April saw 11 club members travel to Dartford for the annual Kent Closed judo championship and once again our judoka did really well.  There was a good turnout across most of the categories, although there were a lack of players in some of the junior groups and the senior ladies were once again under represented.

However, all of our fighters gave everything they had and put in some outstanding performances.  Several of the club's Coaches were on hand to provide support and advice and it was nice to see Sally, Scott, Eddie, Mark and Gill at the event and giving encouragement to our young players.  Some of our members also turned up to add to the support and it was nice to see Lewis O'Neil and Alex Summers there as well.

Our first medallist of the day was Steve Stacy in the Men's U90kg.  Steve pulled off a couple of cracking Ippons on route to the final, where he met the much taller Craig Holmes from Crayford Judo Club.  Craig, currently rated 18th in the country at this weight, used his height advantage to good effect and scored a good Ippon with Tai Otoshi to take the Gold, leaving Steve to take home the Silver.

Walderslade only had one other senior taking part on the day, 17 year old Sulltan Bello.  This was Sulltan's first trip out as a senior to an event of this standard and he gave it his all, resulting in a well deserved Bronze for all his efforts. 

Walderslade's juniors fought really hard and for some this was their first major event.

Charlotte Jenman, Girls U28, had one of the toughest opening fights, meeting former Walderslade fighter Annalise Carew in her opening bout.  Annalise is the current British Championship at this weight in the 10/11 year old category so it was always going to be a hard first fight for Charlotte.  She gave all she had and although she lost this contest she went on to win her remaining fights with ease and secured herself a first Kent Closed Silver medal.

Lex Hyde, U34, had an excellent return to competition after a year off and pulled off some classy judo on his way to the final.  Here he was unlucky to get caught quickly for a drop seoi nage in the opening minute and had to settle for the Silver.  Patrick Ziga was taking part in his first event and was in the same group.  Patrik fought really hard but did not make it into the medals in this tough group.

Michael Ziga fought really well in the U42kg and earned himself a Bronze, defeating some surprised more experienced players along the way.  This was a large group and Michael had to dig deep to find the energy to get through to the last bell.

Sinead Ferguson had a tough few fights but eventually came away with the Silver in the U52kg group whilst Jordan Weeks took the same in the Boys U55kg group.

Jack Jenman, U73, earned a credible Bronze after some really tough bouts where the result could have gone either way, whilst Liam McDonagh-Brown took a first Gold in the O73kg group.

Kristian Horvath fought extremely hard and almost made it into the Bronze medal position in a large U48kg group.  Kristian pulled off some great throws on his way but was just beaten in the Bronze medal play-off.

Senior Coach Eddie Orgee, who was at the event, said he had been pleased with the spirit and effort put in by all of the clubs players.  There were some small areas that the club's Coaches noted could be built upon and work on those areas will start now in order to improve performances for the next events.  On the whole it had been another great day for the club competitively with some great performances that can be built upon for the future.

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