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YOUNG JUDO STARS PUT CLUB ON THE MAP.
Source : Carmarthen Journal, Wednesday, 29th December 1993.
A team of three competitors attended the Maesteg Annual Judo Championships which attracted teams from all over England and Wales, including Poole Bay, Wrexham, Hardy Spicer (Birmingham) and High Wycombe. There were numerous international competitors and national champions taking part.
The first team member to fight was Peter Maynard, 15, of Carmarthen who qualified for the under 60kg category.
Peter put up a spending performance in only his second Maesteg competition but was unlucky to have been drawn against the eventual gold and silver medallist. On this occasion he did not gain a medal.
The second to Carmarthen competitor was 17 year old Alun Evans of Carmarthen fighting in the under 71kg weight group. He was taking part in his first tournament and faced stiff and experienced opponents. However, he did exceptionally well and reached the final. The last opponent for Alun proved too strong but he won a well deserved silver.
The final member of the team at Maesteg was Ceri Griffiths of Rhydargaeau; he was competing in the open weight group.
He once again gave a fine performance showing true determination to win the open title and gold medal despite losing his first fight.
Ceri had previously been successful in The Newport Open Championships winning a well deserved silver medal.
Mr Len Singer, coach at the Union Street club, congratulated all three boys on their performance, showing once again that Carmarthen were producing a good crop of young competitors.
The second team of three fighters travelled to Cannock Chase, near Birmingham, to take part in the Ian Brown Memorial Championships.
The youngest competitor was Chris Whatley of Carmarthen, who, despite feeling off-colour, made an excellent effort against two strong opponents in the under 37kg category.
Unfortunately, on this occasion he did not reach the final rounds although he recently gained a bronze medal at The Newport Open Championships.
Barry Thomas of Gwyddgrug, fighting in the under 55kg weight category, had an excellent afternoon of competition.
He fought his way through several tough opponents, convincingly beating the current British champion, but narrowly lost in the final fight attempting to take bronze.
The final member of the team was Mark Griffiths, of Rhydargaeau, who was fighting in the open category.
He put up a splendid performance against quality opposition in these major championships. He fought through the final rounds gaining a hard won bronze medal.