(Nov. 30, 2020) - Members of the USA National Poomsae Team achieved an historic first as all 18 members advanced to the semifinal round of the 2020 Online World Poomsae Championships. To advance to the semifinal round, members had to place in the top 50% of their group. It is the first time since the inception of the WT World Poomsae Championships in 2006 that the USA team has achieved this feat. Despite being an online event, the divisions reached record sizes, with member national associations from all over the world attending.
The Under 65 Male Division was divided into 2 groups of 10. James Park advanced to the semifinals by placing third in his group, performing Keumgang and Shipjin. The Under 60 Male Group was divided into a group of 15 and 16 - Eun Ig Lee performed Koryo and Pyongwon, placing fifth in his group.
In the Under 50 Division, Thoa Nguyen placed second in her division in her group (there were 2 groups of 13 and 12), and Pok Sun Yang placed second in his division of 20 (2 groups of 20 and 19). Both performed Taegeuk 8 and Taebaek.
In the Under 40 division, Kathy Do placed third in her group (there were 2 groups of 16 and 15), and Anh Nguyen placed first in his group (groups of 17 and 16), both performing Taegeuk 7 and Keumgang.
In the Under 30 division, Ester Jo placed second in her group (3 groups of 21, 21 and 20) and Alex Lee placed 2nd his group (3 groups of 22, 21, 21), both performing Taegeuk 7 and Taebaek.
In the Junior (15-17) division, Sharlene Duong placed fifth in her group among 8 groups of 23 each. Ryan Real placed second in his group, one of 8 groups of 22, performing Taegeuk 6 and Koryo. The Cadet and Junior divisions were open and therefore more than one player per country could compete.
In the Cadet Division (12-14), Juliana Candelaria placed third in her group (among 8 groups of 27) and Sunghyun Eric Gun placed first in his group (among 8 groups of 24), performing Taegeuk 4 and Taegeuk 8.
In the Over 17 Freestyle Divisions, Stephanie May Fausto placed second in her group (among 2 groups of 11 and 10), and Nathaniel Cromwell placed third in his group (among 2 groups of 15 and 14).
Joining the action in future rounds will be Elva Pai Adams in Female Under 60, Barbara Brand in Female Under 65, Tweedy Nguyen in Female Over 65 Female and Chi Duong in Male Over 65.
The Head of Team for Team USA is Ron Southwick. The head coach of the team is Dan Chuang, with coaches Barbara Brand, Giduk Gun, Jung Hwan Jin, Sangjae Lee, Huy Nguyen, Long Nguyen and David Turgeon supporting the athletes. The managers are Jan Trigg and Sarah Lavan.
The semifinal round will be broadcast Dec. 5-6 on the World Taekwondo Youtube Channel, and Finals will be broadcast Dec. 7-15.