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Bianca Walkden: “I did what I had to”

Bianca Walkden: “I did what I had to”

British Taekwondo star defends her performance after an extremely controversial final match against the reigning Olympic champion Shuyin Zheng (China)

“It’s not how I wanted it to go, but a win is a win,” Walkden told the media at the mixed zone of Manchester Arena after her final fight against Olympic champion Shuyin Zheng had just finished.

“Obviously it wasn’t nice [to hear the boos], but I never gave up and was going to die out there fighting for the win, which I think showed,” said Walkden.

“I did what I had to and I’m now a three-time world champion, which they can’t take away from me.”

Videos

Walkden at Manchester Arena mixed zone


Story

The local crowd at Manchester Arena exploded after two of their favorite players won gold on Manchester 2019 World Championships Friday evening action. Queen B, the former double world champion, is now the triple world champion after getting rid of her toughest rival, Shuyin Zheng from China, in a controversial match that was defined by the decisions of the referee. The second local hero of the day was Bradley Sinden, who climbed to the top of the podium after edging Javier Perez from Spain in a spectacular match which was finally decide by small details. The third champion of the 3rd day of action was another Korean, the fourth winner in the event, Jun-seo Bae, who was crowned as the new Men’s -54 king after smashing Popov from Russia.

W+73 kg podium with Walkden and Zheng in tears

Controversy

Bianca Walkden was crowned world champion for the third time in a dramatic and controversial match that was clearly in control of her opponent, the reigning Olympic champion Shuyin Zheng from China. Zheng was leading 16-6 at the end of the second round, but she had been given seven gam-jeoms by the referee. In the third period, Walkden tried to overcome her disadvantage by making her opponent accumulate 10 penalties so that the Chinese would be disqualified. And Walkden managed to do so by forcing Zheng to step out of the ring in 4 more occasions (with 20-11 for the Chinese), but part of the crowd thought she was grabbing her opponent while doing so and started to boo. When the referee declared the end of the match, the Chinese representative started to cry and was completely devastated, asking the organization for the gold medal, which she found the fair thing to do. Zheng couldn’t even stand on the podium because of the sadness, while Walkden tried to cope with the uncomfortable situation by saying she only “did her job”. A dramatic and awkward scene for all Taekwondo fans.

Scene of the podium

WTM

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