Judo: Owen takes on a new age group

Midland Area Heart of England Open Judo Championships – Walsall

WITH a new age group in a new season, Owen Lambert (13) of Harlow Judo Club, travelled north to represent the Club in the Midland Area’s Heart of England Open Judo Championships level 4 event.

Owen competed in his first event in the Cadets section where players are born between 2003 – 2005 and where the introduction of arm-locks and strangles are allowed.

After weigh-in in the morning, Owen had a long wait before stepping onto one of the 4 mats, due to the event running behind schedule, Owen remained focused and calm for his first fight which, now last 4 minutes as opposed to 3 minutes. Owen’s mat was fought on a compound repecharge method, ie, if you lose 2 fights, you are out of the competition. He won his first fight with ease with a brilliant drop technique to score Ippon (maximum 10 points). His second fight was won very quickly, again with Ippon score and another drop technique. After a little bit of a wait, and watching players in his weight group disappear, Owen was up in the final against a 2nd year Cadet player whom he had met very early on in his judo career.

Both players have the utmost respect for each other as they often bump into one another off mat at judo events, but this is the first time that they had fought each other for a long time. Knowing what Owen was up against, he had to refocus and re-visit his game plan with Club Coach, Nigel. Both players were very strong and took the round to its full 4 minutes. With no score either side, Golden Score was in place where whoever scores first, wins the round. There is no break in between – just straight into Golden Score. Unfortunately, after approximately 3 minutes of extra time, Owen picked up 3 penalties which cost him potentially the Gold medal but fought very hard for his Silver medal.

Club Coach Nigel, accompanied Owen to the competition and said that he listened well to instruction and was impressed with his own focus and mature performance today.

Harlow Judo Club are always on the lookout for sponsorship to help fund players in events all around the country at various levels. If you can assist, please contact Gill Ellis on gillianellis48@yahoo.co.uk or 07976 955905. The Club also caters for those with special needs – please contact the Club for more details. They are based in Foldcroft, Harlow, CM20 1SE. For training times, please visit www.harlowjudoclub.com

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