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2009 World Taekwondo Championships Kick off in Copenhagen, Denmark
Steven Lopez of the United States delivers a kick to Spain’s Nicolas Garcia Hemme in the men’s under 80kg final match on the opening day of the 2009 WTF World Taekwondo Championships at the Ballerup Super Arena near Copenhagen, Denmark on Oct. 14, 2009. Lopez needed a fourth “sudden-death” round to become the first five-time champion.

The 2009 WTF World Taekwondo Championships kicked off on Oct. 14, 2009 for a five-day run at the Ballerup Super Arena in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The Copenhagen World Taekwondo Championships drew a total of 928 athletes, including 558 men, from 142 countries, the largest ever in WTF history. The 2007 Beijing World Taekwondo Championships attracted 865 athletes from 116 countries.

For the first time in WTF history, electronic body protectors were used at the World Championships. Under revised Competition Rules, an instant video replay system was introduced, along with a new scoring system, which gives an athlete three points per kick to the head.

During the opening ceremony of the 19th WTF World Taekwondo Championships, WTF President Chungwon Choue made a speech for the participants. Choue was reelected a third time as president of the WTF at the WTF General Assembly at the Scandic Copenhagen Hotel on Oct. 13.

In his speech, WTF President Choue said, “Now the sport of taekwondo has become more dynamic than ever, and more globalized than ever. I thank all the taekwondo family for the support and love for our sport.”

“I hope that we will once again witness a dynamic and fair competition here in Copenhagen with the use of electronic protectors and an instant video replay system under the revised Competition Rules,” Choue said. “Taekwondo is a global sport that enjoys the Olympic status. Through the 2009 World Championships, I hope all athletes and officials will showcase the beauty of taekwondo to project excellence, fair play and friendship.”

Mr. Soren Holmgard Knudsen, president of the Danish Taekwondo Federation, also made a congratulatory speech.

Mr. Ole Dalsgard, mayor of the city of Ballerup, declared the championships open.

The WTF Taekwondo Demonstration Team, together with Danish taekwondo demonstrators, made good taekwondo demonstrations for the participants of the opening ceremony.






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