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November 2016

World Judo Championships - Veterans

Three club members traveled to the USA earlier this month to compete in the World Judo Championships - Veterans 2016 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Almost 1,300 of judo's toughest players over the age of 30 descended upon the Fort Lauderdale Convention Centre for the 4 day event and one of our club members emerged with a fantastic Bronze medal, being the first time any of our club members has ever taken a medal at a World Championship level event.

Lee Cahalane competed in the M4 -90kg category and despite a good performance was knocked out of the event in the preliminary rounds by the two players who went on to take joint 5th places.  A very sound performance from a fighter who is improving all the time and was certainly not out-classed at the event and who was only just beaten but players who finished just outside of medal places themselves.

Eddie Orgee, M5 -60kg  traveled to the event with a back injury obtained in the build-up to the event and unfortunately aggravated this to the extent that he was unable to compete on the day.  The injury worsened during the warm-up session on the day of competition and sadly he had to withdraw from the tournament despite some intensive physio in an attempt to get him up and walking. 

However, the star of the show was Caz Rawlings, F2 -57kg, who was leading against the eventual group winner before sustaining a severe knock to the head.  The fight was stopped with 50 seconds on the clock and Caz clearly in control of the contest and miles ahead on the scoreboard, with a yuko and a Waza-ari already scored and the American opponent also a Shido down. 

With a potential concussion evident the Referee stopped the fight and Caz had to attend the medical doctor on site in order to get permission to continue.

Caz was given permission to continue and gathered herself after the disappointment of the semi-final fight being stopped and when she went out for the bronze medal fight she won this in style throwing her opponent for Waza-ari and later pinning her for ippon following another good Yuko score.  This gave Caz the bronze medal and she became the club's first World Championship medalist.  A huge congratulations from all our club members on this fantastic achievement, which comes hot on the back of winning the British Masters Championships in October. 

Following the tournament the three club members had the opportunity to attend a post competition Training Camp and train with USA Olympic Coach and former World Champion Jimmy Pedro and judo legend Yasuhiro Yamashita.  Although Eddie and Caz were still not fully fit they were still able to take part in some of the sessions.  Lee, Caz and Eddie did however manage to get a photo with both of these judo legends.

Club Championships

Meanwhile many of our junior members were taking part in an invitation club championships organised by Walderslade Coach Sally Elcome.  The event was a great success and there plans to run these on  amore regular basis now.

October 2016

British Masters Open Judo Championships

The highlight of the month was the British Masters Championships held in Edinburgh, where we had 5 senior club members take part and four of them gained medals and British Masters Squad places, with Caz topping the bill and taking gold in the -63kg Category and the title of British Masters Champion.

Our medalists were; Lee Cahalane Bronze, Eddie Orgee bronze, Mark Robertson Silver and Caz Rawlings Gold.  Ranj Atwal pulled off one of the throws of the tournament to reach the bronze medal play-off but was narrowly beaten in the closing seconds.

International Training Camp

Our largest event of the year is always our International Training Camp, where judoka from France and Holland travel to Walderslade for our annual two day event.  A lot of organisation goes into this and a huge thank you goes out to everyone who worked so hard over the weekend to make the event a great success.  Over 120 judoka attended the event across the weekend and the sessions led by former Wolrd and european Champion Craig Fallon were excellent.  Craig was assisted at the event by Nathon Burns and both of them worked really hard and gave those attending an excellent days judo.

June 2016

Kent international

A handful of club members entered this tough event but unfortunately there were no medals on this occasion.  Scott Riley competed in a very tough group as did Christos.  A lot of good experience and hopefully medals next time. For the juniors we had Thomas Ledger and Daniel Stringer but on this occasion both had to settle outside medal places.  

European Veterans Championships, Porec, Croatia

Whilst some club members were competing in Kent we had Lee Cahalane and Caz Rawlings traveling to Croatia for this IJF European Championships.  Lee was competing in the -90kg category whilst Caz was there to take part in the Training camp as she was still in recovery after knee surgery.  Lee fought well but was not able to medal on this occasion.  However, he picked up some wins and lots of good experience. 

Westland Tournament, Holland

Coaches Eddie Orgee and Brian Stringer led a small group of three juniors to the Westland Tournament in Holland in June.  They stopped off for a brief training session at Judo Club Monsois in Lille and then headed for Holland for their evening meal before the tournament on Sunday morning.  Daniel Stringer, Ethan Watkin and Sid Bartlett all fought well and secured wins but were not able to make the medal positions on this occasion.  They all learnt valuable lessons and having taken part in an event of this size will provide them with lots of positive learning for the future.  Both Eddie and Brian were very proud of the way the youngsters behaved and how they conducted themselves through out the long weekend trip.  Here's to next year and hopefully more entires and maybe some medals. 

April 2016

Kent Closed

Club members once again did really well at this event and brought a number of medals back to the club.  Christos took Gold in the +100 Mens category, Chris Carr took Silver in the -73kg and Lee Cahalane took bronze in the -90kgs event.

For the juniors, Daniel Stringer took Bronze, Thomas Ledger Bronze, Rebecca Ledger Silver and Phoebe Cullen Bronze.  Wiktoria Gmiterek fought hard but this was her first attempt at an event of this standard and was unable to make ot to the medal positions. 

British Schools Championships, Sheffield

Over 750 judoka took part in this high standard event including three Walderslade members.  It was an eventful trip all round with Eddie and Mark having a window blow in on the A1(M) and arriving late having had to remove broken glass from almost every nook and cranny and freezing for the last half of the journey.

The incident did not dampen things too much though and although Will Rolfe weighed in 1kg about his category and had to compete at -73kgs he still put in a brilliant effort against the heavier players.  Thomas Ledger also fought well in the -34kg group.  He had two good wins but with two losses following that he was unable to move ahead to the medal play-offs.

Liam Ferguson provided the highlight of the day when he took bronze in a tough -90kg group.  Well done to all those who took part and especially to Liam on his Bronze medal at the British Schools Championships. 

Kent Team Championships

Kent organised the first junior team championships in many years in April and a number of Walderslade teams entered and had a great time with all three of our teams coming away with bronze medals for their efforts.  Walderslade Coach Sally Elcome was very impressed with the efforts put in especially from those who had never entered a judo tournament before.

Club trip to Lille 

Our annual trip to Lille took place over the weekend of 23-24 April and what a weekend it was. As usual our French hosts laid on an excellent weekend of judo and a group of 30 of us traveled to France for the trip including many 'first-timers'.  Everyone enjoyed the weekend and there was sa positive vibe on the return journey with many saying the will return again next year.  Keep an eye on the notice board for the dates for next years trip.

January 2016

The year got off to a great start with medals galore for our junior and senior members.  Two of our seniors entered the Kent Kyu Open at Dartford and both came away with well fought for medals.  Christos came away with a bronze and showed further signs of improving his skills again and Lee came away with another well deserved Silver.

Meanwhile the clubs Juniors were having a great time at the Southern Area selections for the British Schools Championships being held in April. Five club members entered the event and all of them came away with medals, three of them Gold.  Silver medals were won by Thomas Ledger and Will Rolfe whilst the Gold medals went to Oliver Enness, Rebecca Ledger and Liam Ferguson after some fantastic and plucky displays of judo. Thomas, Will and Liam also qualified to compete in the British Schools Championships in April at Ice Sheffield.   

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