The Poles surprised, although not always positively. An absolute debutant in the finals of the European Games in taekwondo.
The second day of competition in Olympic taekwondo at the European Games was full of emotions. Unfortunately, for the Poles, mainly in surprises and disappointment. According to experts, the favorite for a medal was Patrycja Adamkiewicz. Although she won the first fight in good style 2:0 (4:3, 13:1), in the second she quite unexpectedly succumbed to Kristina Tomić, who, as it later turned out, won the bronze medal in the category – 57kg.
Surprises in the fights of the Poles
– We believe in Ola Kowalchuk, who finished fifth at the Tokyo Games, and Patrycja Adamkiewicz. The others are honing their skills. They have the opportunity to meet the world’s top,” said Artur Chmielarz, vice president of the Polish Olympic Taekwondo Association .
Sebastian Uścimiuk was positively surprised. In the 1/8 of the -63 kg category he defeated Niko Saarien. He lost in the quarterfinals, to Denis Baretta, who reached for gold at the end of the struggle. In the repechage, he also felt the bitterness of defeat, but his fight with Jurido Cani from Albania, was one of the best of the second day of the struggle in Krynica. In the final round, at 7:9, when the Pole still had a chance, one kick to the head for three points was the deciding factor. From that point on Uścimiuk could not get back into the fight and lost the third round with 12:20.
-I certainly fought better than in the quarterfinals. In the first round I gave it my all, the second I slept, and in the third I had to open up. I knew that if I didn’t score I could be more vulnerable to kicks,” concluded Uścimiuk.
The Albanian lost the match for third place. Souleyman Alaphilippe reached for the bronze medal.
The 17-year-old fought the Olympic champion in the finals
The gold in the category up to -53 kg was won by Ivana Duvancić. She surprised as she won against the younger, but higher ranked Alma Perez in the world ranking.
Bradly Sinden was unable to compete for gold in the men’s -68 kg category. The Briton was hampered by injury, and the medal was awarded to Javier Polo Perez.
In the women’s -57 kg final, fate, or perhaps rather skill, paired Luana Marton, a 17-year-old from Hungary, with Jade Jones, the Olympic champion from the London Games. Despite her illustrious competitive career, it was the young Hungarian who could count on the support of her fans. Her fan club was in the stands, chanting “ria, ria, Hungaria” through the fight. Despite the fantastic support, hundreds of miles from home, experience won out. The gold was enjoyed by Jones, but the silver of taekwondo’s biggest event in 2023 is an incredibly strong start to Marton’s career.
I felt very good all day, but before the fight with Jade I felt stress. This is my first senior competition and I’m happy to have advanced to the finals. I will give it my all, in Paris I aim for gold,” Marton summed up the last fight of the second day of competition in Krynica .