Minsk, Belarus December 14-15 2019
Report by Nicolas Taylor:
Friday December 13th I traveled to Minsk (Belarus) for the 20th International Christmas Cup and my last competition for 2019! On Saturday early afternoon I participated to a 3-hours umpire seminar given by Sergey Saulite from Latvia (4th Dan) and acting as Chief Referee for this competition. Afterwards there was an exam (maybe an idea for future umpire seminar in Belgium). In the late afternoon I attended a sparring seminar given by Oleg and Katya Solovey. In the evening there was a dinner party with representatives of the different countries participating to this tournament. Sunday was the big day. Despite 8 rings, with 800 participants from 12 countries, we knew it would be a long day. Competition started at 8.30 AM and finished at 10.00 PM. In tul I obtained the 3rd place, losing against the winner of the category. And in sparring I lost the final with golden point. My categories were in the morning. So, as from 1.00 PM to the end, I’ve been acting as referee. I had the opportunity to be the centre referee for tuls (coloured belts youth and juniors) as well as corner referee in sparring. It has been a busy weekend but also a very interesting one with lots of experiences. Now it’s time to take a small break before preparing next year!