Phelan and Cahill take silver in Belgium Open

BOTH David Phelan and Emma Cahill earned the spotlight for South Dublin Taekwondo last weekend after they both carded silver medal wins at the Belgian Open in Brussels.

The event in Lommel was a G2 (Grade 2 event), meaning senior events have double ranking points up for grabs.

SDTKD David Phelan and Emma Cahill

David Phelan and Emma Cahill of South Dublin Taekwondo both won silver at the Belgian Open in Brussels.

While there are no ranking points available for minor ages, the event still draws strong fields of international youth athletes from all continents, traveling alongside their senior counterparts.

The South Dublin pair both had a total of five matches each, fighting off some of the most prominent competitors in their respective divisions.

Indeed, in her -41kg Cadet division, Cahill saw off challenges from international athletes from Poland, Germany, Netherlands and Canada before her final match against German opposition. Similarly, Phelan had a quadruple of wins against Spain, Germany, Netherlands and Serbia before finally shipping a loss against Hungary in his -63kg Junior division.

Speaking about the success of his young protégés, Coach Robert Taaffe said “We moved both players up a weight division as a trial exercise and to future proof the near future so medals were not necessarily expected.

“But both set out with real intent and their adjusted approach to fights against bigger opposition worked well.

“Their momentum was phenomenal and they really made an impact for the Irish on St Patrick’s Day.

Phelan and Cahillcollage 1

“Both showed great patience and control, and their mental approach was on point” he added.

Both Cahill and Phelan now return to training in advance of upcoming outings in Germany and Bulgaria in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile South Dublin’s Olympic hopeful Jack Woolley did not enjoy his best outing in Belgium, receiving a bye in the first round and winning his second before losing out in the third against an opponent he had point-gapped in Turkey earlier this year.

“It was not the result he wanted or expected, but it’s not a massive issue” insisted Taaffe.

“Jack will max his open event ranking points this year no problem, but it just would have been nice to do it last weekend” he said.

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