Willie fails to retain taekwondo title at Games


TEAM Papua New Guinea taekwondo athlete Bobbie Willie failed to retain his Pacific Games title after losing to Australia’s Mackenzie Singleton in the men’s under 54kg in Apia, Samoa, yesterday.
From the moment the first round began it was clear that the pair were evenly matched in terms of speed and agility, with neither opponent being able to keep the lead in the first round.
However, Willie proved that experience was a priceless asset by landing multiple strategic hits to the body as well as two consecutive spinning kicks to the head during the second round, leading 18 to 16 points. Singleton retaliated with a volley of high-speed attacks to try and close the gap, but seemed to be no match for Willie’s intuitive precision and iron focus, leaving the point margin at 33 to 45 with only 30 seconds left on the clock.
Miraculously, under the pressure of adrenaline and a few lucky hits, Australia managed to scrape through with the gold, winning by a single point (47–46).
“I’m here to defend my title, but I couldn’t,” Willie after falling to his knees at the end of the match.
“So right now, seeing the time run out, I couldn’t hold back my tears. I’m extremely disappointed but there is always a winner and a loser, so it’s ok.”
Willie expressed gratitude to his friends, family, team and coach as he moves his focus to the next goal.
“I’m training hard to realise my dream of going to the Olympics (in Tokyo, Japan, next year).”
– gamesnewsservice

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