Steven & Diana Lopez Medal at World Taekwondo Tour
(from the WTF website)
Amid high interest from both the public and international media, the World Taekwondo Tour 2009 Mexico wrapped up in a resounding success in Mexico City, Mexico on Nov. 14, 2009.
Before a jam-packed gymnasium of the Palacio de los Deportes in Mexico City, Korea's Su-jeong Lim defeated Guatemala's Euda Carias Morales 15-2 to win the top honors in the women's -57kg category. With the victory, Lim, the gold medal winner both at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and the 2009 World Taekwondo Championships in Copenhagen, Denmark, took home $20,000 in prize money.
The United States' Diana Lopez and Spain's Andrea Rica Taboada each won the bronze medal in the same category, together with $5,000 in prize money.
In the men's -80kg final match, Great Britain's Aaron Cook, who narrowly missed out on an Olympic medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, came from behind to defeated the United States' Steven Lopez to the with a KO victory. In the second round of the final match, Cook sent Lopez, the five-time world champion and two-time Olympic medalist, to the floor with brilliant headshot, drawing a big applause from the spectators.
Korea's Jung-ho Park and Iran's Farzad Abdolahi clinched the bronze medal.
In the men's -68kg division, host Mexico's Idulio Islas won the title by edging Iran's Mohammad Bagheri 9-0, while Germany's Daniel Manz and Canada's Maxim Potvin earned their respective country the bronze medal.
The Dominican Republic's Gabriel Mercedes, the silver medalist at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, outpointed Brazil's Marcio Ferreira 3-0 for the title. Spain's Joel Gonzalez Bonilla and Mexico's Damian Villa won the bronze medal each.
The one-day World Taekwondo Tour, the first of its kind, drew a total of 16 top-class athletes in four weight categories. Electronic protectors and an instant video replay system were not used.
Modified WTF Competition Rules were applied to the event, in which a kick to the head granted an athlete four points, together with a strict 10-second rule.
During the opening ceremony of the World Taekwondo Tour, WTF President Chungwon Choue said, "The World Taekwondo Federation has put its utmost effort to create a new image of taekwondo. This brought about significant achievements, including globalization of taekwondo, more dynamic and transparent taekwondo competitions, and fair judging."
"I am pleased to be here in Mexico City to witness yet again best performance in fair and dynamic taekwondo competitions and your passion for our sport," he said. "You are not just participating in a taekwondo event, but you are making taekwondo history at this very moment."