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2004 New Zealand Taekwondo Championships

2004 New Zealand Taekwondo Championships

350 Taekwondo competitors will assemble in Palmerston North on Saturday the 18th September at Arena Manawatu for the 2004 Taekwondo Union of New Zealand National Championships.

The Union will be pouring all its resources into this tournament with four rings and electronic scoring operating throughout the day in both Olympic style fighting and WTF-Style forms competition.

All weight categories in the adult male and female black belt divisions will be contested this year with the TUNZ recently having a growth spurt due to a new management team and administration.

Competitors from over 35 clubs will participate and of particular interest will be the junior and adult black belt divisions as fighters with recent international exposure hope to build on their experiences.

With no defending champion this year in the men's heavyweight division six players have entered including last year's runner up Dafydd Sanders of Auckland and former heavyweight champion Wellington's Mike Murray.

Women's heavyweight champion, Hope Fairless of Manawatu will defend against the experience of former middleweight and heavyweight champions Simone Po from Wellington and Kathy Bell of Hawkes Bay, while current welterweight champion Farah Robinson, Wellington will meet Auckland's Paula Lyons for a third time in as many years, with Paula winning the title from her in 2001 and coming back strong this year to win the North Island title against Waikato's Heather Coffey. The men's welterweight division is completely open with champion Danny Cartlidge facing strong challenges from former champion Glen Robinson, Wellington and South Island Champion Shane Philpot while the men's lightweight champion Alan Brian defends from Christchurch against the international experience of Auckland's Steve Anderson who has also recently embarked on a successful kick-boxing career.

The women’s bantamweight division is up for grabs this year and will be contested by Wellington's Tanya Tito and Auckland's Leanne Stoutley, meeting each other for the first time while Christchurch's Aroha Miller will defend her featherweight title against Lower Hutt's upcoming hopeful Tracy Coleman.

In the junior black belt girls bantamweight division Hayley Schofield of Lower Hutt will put her recent international success at the Canadian Open on the line against Kelly-Leigh Hannah and Rebecca Ma from Auckland.

The tournament will be a one-day event with children and veterans divisions kicking off at 10.00am and moving through the various colour belt grades towards the black belt bouts in the late afternoon.

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