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Sansum Gold Gives Him Fighting Chance

Sansum Gold Gives Him Fighting Chance

by James Skitt - 05.03.12

Former World kick-boxing champion Damon Sansum, who switched to Taekwondo after being identified through the ‘Fighting Chance’ talent identification initiative, claimed gold at the German Open on Saturday after defeating fellow Briton Lutalo Muhammad 9-8 in the -80kg weight division final.

Sansum edged the final in sudden death after Muhammad had earlier caught the eye with a semi final victory over another Brit, Aaron Cook, as competition for places in the London Olympic squad, set to named in three months time, intensifies.

Developed by Sport Taekwondo UK in partnership with the UK Talent Team (a collaboration between UK Sport and the English Institute of Sport [EIS]), the Fighting Chance initiative aimed to harness transferable talents from athletes from other martial arts who had not had the opportunity to compete in the Olympic code of the sport, with the ultimate aim of achieving podium places in 2012.

"I'm made up beyond all belief," Sansum told the GB Taekwondo website.

"I've won things before in kick boxing at the top level, but this means 10 times all of that.

"I've been training full time for the last year and a half and am still learning and today it all came together.

"And now it puts my stamp on the Olympics and its getting more of a dream now.

"I felt good today, I beat the Russian by 12 points in the semi final and I'm made up.

"Now I've won and it feels amazing.

“I'm going to chill out, speak to the family. My dad will be dead happy, and then a quick turnaround for the Dutch Open followed by the European Championships in Manchester in May.”

Other GB medal winners in Hamburg were Jade Jones, who collected an impressive victory over World Champion Yuzhou Hou on her way to a silver medal in the -57 kg weight division and Jamie Abley, who won -59kg junior silver.

Full details can be found on the GB Taekwondo website



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