Jujitsu team fighting fit as it takes home stunning haul of 17 medals

A jujitsu team took home 17 medals in total, including 11 golds, following a competition.

Hyndburn-based Kuon Ji Jujitsu sent its team down to Llanelli in South Wales for the Welsh Jujutsu Nationals. The team joined more than 100 competitors from Wales and England.

The Welsh Nationals included two events, with Sports Jujitsu being the main event, with a Ne Waza (grappling) event also tagged on. The Sports Jujitsu includes sparring, throwing and grappling all in one continuous bout.

Kuon Ji’s first fighter on the day was 14-year-old Tilly Holden.

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Tilly powered her way through three fights to win the gold medal in the Ne Waza, and the first medal of the day for Kuon Ji. She then followed this up with a bronze in the Sports JuJitsu. Sophia Miller, 11, followed her teammate and smashed her way to the gold in her weight category in the Ne Waza, and also a bronze in the Sports JuJitsu.

The medals kept coming for the Kuon Ji team, with Spencer Brandon, 15, winning gold in Sports JuJitsu and bronze in Ne Waza. His younger brother Taylor Brandon, 11, fought superbly to take gold in both the Ne Waza and the Sports Jujitsu events.

Theo Vallentin, 16, won gold in Ne Waza, followed by gold in Sports JuJitsu, and then added a third gold in Sports Jujitsu by stepping up a weight division. He was followed by his younger brother Olly Vallentin, 13, battling his way to a bronze in the Ne Waza.

Matthew Baron, 11, had a tough group to get through, but managed to pull off a great result winning a silver medal in the process. Joseph Baron fought valiantly throughout the day, but was also in a tough group and although he left without a medal, he did the team proud with a great performance.

Zac Robinson represented the Senior team, and wiped the board, coming away with gold in the Ne Waza and Sports JuJitsu, and then stepping up a weight division to claim another Ne Waza gold.

When the points for each competitor had been added up, two Kuon Ji team members, Zac Robinson and Theo Vallentin, had come out as joint top athletes on the day, another success for Team Kuon Ji.

The team took 11 new Welsh National Champions home.

Head coach Max Robinson said: “It was a superb performance by the whole team, especially after such an early start at 4am and long journey.

“Our junior squad is developing superbly and we can see great improvements at each competition they enter.

“As well as the normal training nights, the competition squad have been attending additional special sessions just for competition work, and their hard work and dedication has certainly paid off.

“They were all brilliant, but I have to single out Taylor Brandon who came away from this competition disappointed last year, but this year he has improved so much and brought home two gold medals to prove it.

“Tilly Holden and Sophia Miller, who both won gold and bronze in their categories, flew the flag for the girls’ team.

“They were excellent and up against some top opponents. Sophia, especially, as she came up against a European Champion in her category.

“With Theo and Zac winning a clutch of golds as well it just proves that we are training correctly and moving in the right direction with several of the Kuon Ji Team now training regularly with Team GB under Gt. Britain JuJitsu.

“Zac Robinson is part of the Elite Senior GB Team and is due to compete in Germany in the European Championships in May.”

Kuon Ji Jujitsu is a martial arts association with clubs in Oswaldtwistle, Clayton-le-Moors and Accrington.