Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Day 5 - Competition Day

Up early to catch 7:20 bus
I had a nice rest at the stadium as i was not on until 12pm
When the competition started their was a cartoon animation explaining the rules for kumite and when techniques score what points. This was a great idea as there were groups of people that have come to watch this event as a day trip.

The compeition set up was similar to the world games.
There are 8 atheletes in each weight and they are divided into two pools A and B
Each pool is a round robin and the top two fighters in pool A will fight the top two fighters in pool B.

In my Pool i had

NZL 1st fight
Mal 2nd fight
USA 2rd fight
For the semi final i had Tunisia
For bronze medal i fought agains Peru

Monday, 30 August 2010

Day 4 - Retail Therapy - Wangfujing

Collected our Kimonos this morning and weighed in - 60.4kg, i think this is the lightest i have ever weighed.
Decided that we are in need of a little retail therapy ideally i would have liked to visit the Famous Silk market where i could hunt down so new handbags - but alas i am fighting tomorrow so need to be sensible and make sure that my legs get enough rest.

On our way back we met some crazy Taekwondo fans outside the hotel that are acting as volunteers to promote the games to the public.
Tomorrow the comp starts.

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Day 3 Muay Thai

Up at 7:30 again for another training session. Working through the same drill - but this time everything is coming together. Im still getting over the shock of seeing Jet Li and Jackie Chan yesterday.

Today we have to hand in our Kimonos so that they can have our competitor numbers put on the back.

This afternoon - both Greg and myself took a trip to go and watch the Muay Thai Finals. I have never been a big fan of this sport as im a bit squimish when it comes to full contact. ( ironic i know!)
It was really interesting to see the dance rituals that each of the fighters perform before the match starts. I couldn't work it out at first but it was really something to watch.

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Opening Ceremony

I have just been to the most amazing Opening Ceremony every!!!
Jet Li and Jackie Chan were both there!! what more can you ask for!?!?
All of the Athletes and extra officials set off from the hotel in a convoy to the Olympic site. Where they would be hosting the Ceremony. There were police escorts that stopped all of the traffic in Beijing to allow the Convoy of coaches to pass.
At the Ceremony all of the spectators were given Goodie bags, containing a clapper, bottle of H20, Fan and various other goodies.
This was probably the 1st ceremony that i have actually enjoyed - the Chinese did not spare any expense in the entertainment.

Check out the Pics

Yuanmingyuan Gardens

Today we are doing a little sight seeing - we took a trip to Yuanming Yuan Gardens, based in the North West of Beijing. To get there were took the wonderful metro - london underground eat your heart out - in China you get reception on the under ground and TV adverts playing while you are on your journey.

Food pt2

Up at the crack of dawn - 7:30 to train in the University gardens - nice and light but with stretching and trying to loosen off the jet lag. I managed to sleep fine last night however Greg did not.

10 Mins of skipping and then a Punching Drill and Kicking Drill - my legs feel really heavy today but Greg assures me that this is the Jet lag and my body is still waiting to adjust.

Breakfast is a Feast and a half - we are directed to one of the many resturants and the hotel has put on a beautiful breakfast spread - you imagine it - they have it. From Fruit to all different types of breads to chinese cuisine to a chef customising your omellets for you to and all English Breakfast. Even though i am dieting Greg is making the most of the food. What i find is really suprising is how nice all of the other Athletes are to each other. All Martial Arts eat together. You never really appreciate what body types are suited for which martial arts until you see them. There were some guys who are here to compete in Sumo and Sambo ( Russian Wrestling) that make Karate heavy weights look like babies.


OK i have only been here for 1 day and 1/2 and already i am addicted to these lovely biscuits. They are similar to Mikado - thin bread sticks covered in Chocolate - but as i dont eat chocolate i knew that these were made for me :o)!!!!!! Bread sticks covered in Yogurt - I LOVE CHINA ALREADY!!!

Friday, 27 August 2010

Friendship Hotel

After an hour drive we arrive at the Beijing Friendship Hotel. This hotel is absolutely HUGE - it is like its own mini village with an onsite leisure centre with swimming pool and mini supermarket, imagine 5 Hotels in one that are all connected via a crystal maze. There are over 6 Dinning halls, Not only are there other Karate Athletes but also athletes and coaches from all of the other Martial Arts from Sumo, Kendo, Wushu, Kickboxing and Ju Jitsu. Upon arrival i am handed a pack that contains all the details about the event. And a dog tag that grants me access all areas to all the competition venues.
So obviously straight away i am planning to work out which other competitions that i will be able to watch. We also have the opening ceremony tomorrow evening so that should be impressive.
I am a little shocked when i find out that i am sharing with another athlete from a different country. I spoke to a few athletes form the other Karate countries and no one was aware that this was the situation. Funny how the WKF kept that on the down low???
As i have logged on i dont have access to Facebook or Twitter!!! RUBBISH! i knew that China blocked out a few social network sites but come on Facebook is really the internet now. I have even had problems uploading to this blog as i keep getting kicked out :(.

Arriving in China

We have just landed after a 9 hour flight - thank god i managed to sleep 7 out of the 9 hours :). The food was not that bad (no ice cream though!!).

The On-flight entertainment was ok i managed to watch 'How to Train Your Dragon' - not bad. The Captain also tried to convice all the passengers that we should be abel to see the Great wall 15 mins before we landed. However both Cabin Crew and myself couldn't find it.

As soon as i land the first thing i get is a text from O2 explaining the charges that i will get it i dare to use my phone -'Using data while travelling in China cost £6/MB' !!!!!!! but O2 will cap this as £40 or 50MB - how nice of them! As we depart the plane i have also managed to pick up a cold :*( and im breathing like a Darth Veda.
The scale of this competition finally hits home when after having my passport checked i see a huge poster in the airport promoting the Sport Accord Combat Games. This post is the same size as me!
It gets even better - we are met at the airport by a mini bus and on the motorway to the airport one every lampost is a poster promoting the games.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Off We Go

Under the instruction of Greg we have arranged to meet at Heathrow T5 for 1pm, our flight out is at 4:15, we have already checked in online so its just a matter of dropping off our luggage.
T5 is my favourite airport - the Shopping is everything you want ;)
before proceeding to the gate we stopped off at my No:1 sushi place Itsu Sushi and had some lunch as you never know what the plane food will be like - usually resembling card board!
Also boarding my flight were two other British competitors who were Muay Thai fighters.
As this i the first time this tournament has been put together i have no idea what to expect.
We were later joined by Mike Dinsdale at the Gate and Off we go!

Catch up when i land..................