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Jul 6, 2012

Belize to have representation in 30th Olympic Games in London

A local athlete, who has no intention of being written off, actually wants to be written into the record books. Belize will have representation in the thirtieth Olympic Games to be held in London this year in a sport that was introduced to the country in the eighties, but has only been picking up traction since 2006. It’s judo; derived from the traditional martial arts known as Jujitsu, but is not as aggressive. The sport has been an event in the Olympic Games from 1964 and to qualify, one has to compete in many tournaments to gain points. Several wildcards are normally issued to invited countries that would not usually make the cut and Belize was one of the countries to be chosen this year. Representing Belize in the Olympics is Eddermys Sanchez; a naturalized Belizean who competed and won medals in martial arts tournaments between Belize and Mexico. News Five spoke with President of the Judo Association in Belize, Wellington Chee who told us about the selection process and the anticipation for the games later this month. Chee says Sanchez is currently in Guatemala doing intense training in the sport.

 

Wellington Chee, President, Judo Association of Belize

Wellington Chee

“When this came up they approached the Belize Olympic committee and notified that the judo association is being considered for a wildcard recipient. We waited approximately six months and then we got confirmation about a month ago that we have been selected. Mister Sanchez is a Cuban, naturalized Belizean—that’s the only way someone can go to represent Belize; it has to be a Belizean. He has quite a big background in judo while he was in Cuba and after consulting with my board members, he was the candidate that we came up with. We don’t have much choices in Belize at this point because Judo is still very young.”

 

Duane Moody

“I understand that he is out of the country right now doing some intense training. Tell us about that.”

 

Wellington Chee

“Because of trying to get updated because a lot of changes have gone on in the past three years in regards to rules and regulations in the competition, so we thought that he should get some intensive training and up to date with all the techniques. So we approached the Olympic committee and see if they could sponsor and they were able to subsidize some of the expense. So that’s the reason he is presently in Guatemala; he should be returning on Sunday. Judo involves techniques that are done standing in competition and also on the mat. It involves throwing your opponent on to the mat and also rappelling the opponent under submission on the ground or on the mat.”

 

Eddermys Sanchez

Duane Moody

“So it is different from kata and the other form?”

 

Wellington Chee

“Well we do have kata in judo, but that’s for really advance. For you to actually earn a black belt, the requirement is that you must know a certain amount of kata; but that’s a formal part of judo.”

 

The official delegates for the Olympic committee leave on July twenty-first for conferences and meetings prior to the games scheduled for the twenty-seventh. At five-thirty p.m. on Sunday, the Judo Association of Belize is staging a display at the Princess Hotel where the Judo Goodwill Ambassador to the U.S., Neil Ohlenkamp, will showcase the techniques of the martial art. 

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3 Responses for “Belize to have representation in 30th Olympic Games in London”

  1. Storm says:

    Well, if he loves his adopted country, this melting-pot Jewel, and he has the heart to fight well, then I’ll root for him. Good luck!

  2. island boy says:

    Having an athlete in the olympics is so great for our country. Wishing him the best of luck. One never knows what could become of him.

  3. Honeytan says:

    Yes!!! So excited to see Belize in the 2012 games!!! I am very proud of my country!

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