Teenager takes his skills to new level

Before last weekend, many had already predicted Taine Forbes would have a bright future in the sport of taekwondo.

However, in just 11 seconds in Blenheim last Saturday, the 14-year-old enhanced his prospects dramatically when he competed in the Top of the South Taekwondo tournament.

The Invercargill Taekwondo Club competitor and black belt won gold and it took him just 11 seconds to knock out his opponent, the fastest bout of the tournament.

Forbes has the potential and credentials to take his fighting skills to a New Zealand level.

He was one of two Southlanders who won gold in Blenheim, with Bryan Allan, from the Aparima Taekwondo Club, also picking up the major prize.

Allan's gold came in the Poomsae tournament, which is when a series of patterns containing blocks, strikes and kicks is performed.

He competed against five other students and won the gold medal based on his precision and the timing of his strikes.

Although the Aparima Taekwondo Club and Invercargill Taekwondo Club are separate identities, they look after each other and cheer each other on when they attend tournaments such as the Top of the South event.

Instructors Nick Olde-Olthof, from the Aparima Club, and Jason Turnbull, from Invercargill, were delighted with the results, which included a host of medals.

"The results speak for themselves as the students had put in the hard yards and returned with the spoils," Olde-Olthof said.