Staveley quartet shine on world stage for England Taekwondo

Aaron Cobley
Aaron Cobley

Martial arts students from Staveley were part of the Heart of England Unified ITF Taekwondo team which enjoyed a medal haul at this year’s world championships.

No less than 28 athletes went to the tournament in London where they won a collective seven gold, 13 silver and 19 bronze medals.

From left to right: Poppy Tomkinson, Stephen Wagstaff and Josh Pittuck

From left to right: Poppy Tomkinson, Stephen Wagstaff and Josh Pittuck

Staveley’s Andy Cobley, 45, his son Aaron Cobley, 13, Joshua Pittuck, 14, and Poppy Tomkinson, 16, all played their part in helping the club achieve 39 medals in total.

Cobley senior returned as a world champion after he claimed gold with Scott Johnstone Jones and Darren Lake, as part of the veterans team that went through two boards with a knifehand strike.

He also won silver in the team sparring event.

Netherthorpe School pupil Aaron Cobley surpassed all expectations when he claimed four medals.

He narrowly missed out on gold in the under-50kg, under 14 boys sparring event against the USA. The corner judges were unable to determine a winner after two, two-minute rounds and put the fight into extra time.

With 30 seconds to go, Aaron was injured and was unable to complete the match.

The following day in the team events, Aaron captained the under 14 boys with Liam Richardson and Joe Wheatley to bronze in team patterns.

They got silver in sparring after an exciting and nail -biting final against Ireland.

Aaron then joined the over 14s team with Luke Wadsley and Joe Wheatley in special technique and came away with another silver medal.

Fellow Netherthorpe student Joshua Pittuck also returned with a silver medal in individual sparring in the under 40kg category.

The final against Japan was a demonstration of technique, stamina and determination with both oppenents not wanting to give in another very close match.

Poppy Tomkinson was part of a very successful over 14 girls who won three medals in the team events, silver in patterns and sparring and bronze in special technique.

All four Staveley students thanked their instructor at Staveley Taekwondo Club, Steve Wagstaff, and their England coach, Master Gary Bradshaw, for all their help.

The quartet are now looking forwards to the Celtic cup in November and the European Championships next year.

Father and son pairing Aaron and Andy Cobley are also competing in October in the WKU kickboxing world championships in Crete.