Couldn’t be prouder of them!

Well I’m still on cloud 9 with the Evade team after our visit to Stuttgart with team England at the ISKA World championships.

The team bond and friendship was just lovely to be part of, working closely withStuart Tomlinson(Mr Google maps) over the 4 days was just great. The families that came over to support you were awesome, kids can never achieve that level without your full and passionate support.

The tournament organisation, well, enough of that, it was a shambles, end of. Shameful.

However, it’s the fights that count and there were so many crackers, absolute crackers. 
Very strong teams from all around the world, the Ukranian team, well some of them were just monsters and you knew if you’d drawn one you’d better be ready.

There were so many highlights for me throughout the tournament, seeing the transition some of you have made and the way you all worked together was just great to be part of. Team England has some great people, I’ve met so many lovely people on this trip.

Onto the fights!

Evade had 8 students competing in various disciplines across the board, Full contact, K1, Continuous, Points and they did themselves proud in every division. Some awesome performances.

To say I’m proud of the way you were is an understatement.

We’ll have some footage for you as soon as.

Archie Casson – 2 x World Bronze Medallist
Young Archie fought in both K1 & Continuous and well, no more could of been asked of him, he showed a grit and will that made us all proud, attitude is everything and he proved that to himself. Competing in both divisions against some real quality from the Ukraine and Scotland teams, he did so well pulling back before losing to the eventual winners in each categories, the future is very bright for you young man and you’ll grow so much from this experience.

Eve Loughman - World Champion light continuous & World Silver Semi-Contact
Brilliant performance from Eve, she was great, in the light continuous finals she fought a little warrior from Paul Skyaxe Kean Scottish team, Paul’s team and group were just great, to me they were the perfect example of a unified, professional team, some awesome fighters. 
Eve fought great with lovely timing, drawing and countering a very quick lead leg attack & she became the first Gold medallist from the UK! Eve went onto compete in the semi-contact as well, fighting through to the finals losing a very close final in a great performance. Eve so proud of you!

George Barn - lost in the quarter finals against a very good kid, again from Paul's Scottish team, Busy busy tight match that deservedly went to Scotland, George proved to himself and everyone, he’s up at that level, he knows it now. With the extra confidence gained from this, he’s going to just improve and improve. 
George’s attitude was ‘I’d rather lose a close fight than win an easy one’.

Georgia Kinder - World Silver Medallist K1
Georgia had a real war of attrition in her finals losing a very gritty & tough match, with non-stop action from the start, your at this level now sweetheart, this was a tough world championships and again you’ve shown your there in the mix with some of the best of them. Just keep your sights on where your going and you’ll get there. Closer each time.

Damien Bray - lost in the quarter finals
Damien is the perfect example of what discipline and drive can do for you, started Martial Arts, lost 7 stone, got himself in condition, earned his selection for the team, and went out and gave his all in Full contact K1, no excuses like some, fighting a real sharp experienced guy.
Damien it’s people’s attitude to losing that determines how long it will be before they win.
You more than showed without question you have what it takes.

Joseph Burns - World Silver Medalist K1
Watching young Joe compete gets the nerves all over you body tingling, there were some pocket rockets in these divisions, real hard kids from the eastern block, just little wrecking machines, come forward non stop and crack. 
Joe fought razor sharp to the finals with really crisp counter punching and foot work, meeting a Ukranian kid in the finals. There was rapid exchanges and real meaningful crisp shots from each, no doubt this Ukranian kid was sharp but I believe and those all around us believed Joe had done it, very sharp counter punching in combination, variety of kicks, subtle slips and counters (You watch the match and Joe rarely gets caught clean, granted a couple but Joe scores right back immediately), I was convinced he’d got it so were the UK team who were there.
Imagine my disappointment when the corner referee when questioned said she’d never done this before it was her first worlds.
In my opinion you should have the finest refs & corner judges going at a worlds, no excuse for having someone with no experience, they were just volunteering as no one was available. Shocking.
Cost Joe the title we believe.

Ryan Durbridge - World Silver Medalist continuous.
Well you just had to be there! 
Ryan has only been training 2 years and has only previously fought once before! He does so well in training at the centre & did so well in squad training after the selections that I knew all he had to do was know he could do it, that he can mix at this level.

Imagine this!

I look at the draw cards as their calling the area and he’s up against a German champion, anyhow they call his name out and then it starts, 1-2-3 G-e-r-m-a-n-y all shouting, then the Uk start back “England, England, England”, I’m thinking “no pressure then!” flipping heck!

Then a cracking first round for Ryan, totally in the mix, pressing, countering not being overwhelmed and sticking the game plan but a real battle, full on, he comes back to me and Stuart, and we’re like you’ve got this, he’s moving left all the time, ‘Right body kick off the boxing!”, his opponent came out real hard as he knew he had lost the first, they had some real hard exchanges then whack! All over, Ryan lands the perfect Right body round kick to drop his opponent and count him out, 2nd stoppage!!

Ryan then fought a french champion who was really busy with variety and combinations and this was real close, but again pressure and cleaner attacks from Ryan won the day! 
Into the finals against a Jamaican with a killer lead leg side kick who’d been chilling out for the last 20 minutes, Ryan was bust up, 2 real tough matches against experienced guys, nose was bust, totally shattered but ‘in the finals’, the referee looked at Ryan and myself and said 3 minutes thats all you’ve got to get ready! I just thought, aw give him a break he’s only just got off the mat! 
Myself and jake used a few stalling tactics to get as much rest as we could for him. 
I said to him, ‘Ryan, we’re under no illusions here, but you go out and make this kid earn his world title, he can’t just have it! 
He bashed Ryan up with that lead leg, dropping him a few times, really winding him, ryan had everyone behind him, even the Jamaican team were shouting for Ryan to get up, what a fight, he didn’t give up fought right to end, showing tremendous heart and will, even landing a cracking right hand seconds before the bell staggering and wobbling the champion.
I will never forget that match, I don’t think anyone who saw it will forget that match. You gained the respect from everyone.

Jake Johnson - World Bronze Medallist continuous
Jake was just awesome, fought a German champion which was very very busy, Jake showing his brilliant head movement and slick combination counters, no one could believe it when the German team were trying to dispute the decision, myself & Waine Turner who helped corner were stunned, what flipping fight were they watching?

It’s one thing pressuring, but its another whose scoring. Just because someone is attacking doesn’t mean their scoring right? jake blocks and slips nearly everything, what is it your looking for just work rate or the cleaner scores? 
I just knew it then that we were going to have problems.

Jake then fought a Ukranian TANK, short, non stop aggressive, but again cleanest scoring went to Jake, even the american central ref said to me, I honestly believe your lad got that, better movement, cleaner shots, head and body kicks! Don’t know what they were watching. 
No matter what I said they wouldn't do a thing, very very disappointed with the corner judging, they couldn’t speak english whatsoever. Got me no where. Jake, world champion is one thing, but world class is another, which I and everyone who saw you compete know you are.

The way team Evade has worked together and the support from everyone across the UK team has just been awesome to be part of.

(Just wait till you see young Joe & George after eating some crazy chilli at a german market, we told you it’d be daft to do it ha ha)

I’d like to thank the whole UK team who made the effort & made the best of what you were faced with because of the complete mess of organisation, everyone was a bit frustrated, my apologies to Paul Gilmore, I don’t normally react like that but it was clear everyone thought Jake had won, you were put in quite a few situations and remained calm throughout. Tough one to control.

Spending such quality time with Tom Wynne & Homeboy Turner (a new friend for life, what a truly lovely guy) and some of the uk team, well as you know we had some great talks.

I’d like to congratulate my team, you came away with a host of medals, new world champions, new found belief that you are up there with some of the best in the world. I knew it all along.

I also want to thank all the Evade group (your what make it all happen, Sie Heathcote,Stuart TomlinsonJake Moses JohnsonAmanda Evade Martial Arts,Peter MetcalfeIan HoneywoodDaniel GreenbankMatthew SmithLee PriceSam ScottMichael James Ward and all the assistants)

I’m so so proud of you. Dave x