- Ross Taylor

# DJC @ The British Championships (Minors)

On Sunday 6 of DJC's minors players headed up to London to compete in the British Championships (10 & 11yr olds)

I myself drove up on Saturday evening, the drive turned out to be almost 6 hours as i was diverted through central London! which would have been wonderful had i have been a passenger!

The when arriving at the hotel i was greeted by Batman, Superman and the Zombie Bride who were strolling around as Comic Con was also on at Excel which made for an interesting evening!

Sunday morning and everyone congregated at the very impressive venue at the University of East London

Sunday morning and everyone congregated at the very impressive venue at the Universtity of East London

Joe Walker:

'The Strut' was our first player up and was in a group of 20 boys, Joe has had a very disrupted 2019 with a very serious hand injury keeping him on the side lines for most of the spring and summer, So the fact he was even in a position to step onto the Tatami was a huge achievement. He had 4 contests which were all extremely competitive with Joe able to dominate many of them with his superior Tachi Waza, he got caught a couple of times on the ground but i was extremely impressed with his professional performance and this being his first year he will return next year with more experience.

Nate Morgan:

Nate like Joe is only just a minor and this was his first experience of a 'big' BJA competition. His first fight had an element of bad luck after being a Wazari up he just got caught on the ground, Nate has been coming back from a knee injury and this has dented his preparation slightly, his contests were all extremely dynamic and he pushed the 2nd year boys all the way with his intelligent Judo, a valuble experience gained which will no doubt help him next year

We then moved very swiftly onto our girls

Niamh Cotton:

Niamh has been with DJC since she was teeny and over the last 12 months she has arguably been one of our most improved players, this represented a big step up and she did everything that i personally asked of her on the day, she attacked and did very well on the ground, she was in the largest girls group and all of her contests were very competitive, this competition will prove to be a valuable experience for Niamh as she continues to improve month on month and her performance proves she belongs at this national level

Phoebe Frise:

Phoebe has always been one of our top performing girls and at this competition she fought with her usual determination, this group was definitely the 'Blue Ribbon' category with some very dynamic and aggressive girls, the highlight for Pheebs was an extremely dominating performance finishing with a Nugent Tai-Otoshi which gave her an Ippon win! Pheebs is continuing to work with her coaches to develop her Judo. A 5th Place for Phoebe puts her amoung the top girls in the UK

Tia Thyer:

Tia has probably been our hardest training player over the last 12 months and it showed, she didn't show any fear as she attacked like a lion, scoring a couple of Wazaris and fighting hard on the floor, Tia also has the most wonderful attitude and some of our players back at club could learn a lot and look at her example of how to deal with nerves, she always remains cool calm and collected. As a mat side coach this is fantastic to see, A Bronze medal for Tia puts her in the top 3 of girls in the UK

Erin Hopkins:

Erin joined Phoebe in the Blue Ribbon Category and had a 'grind them out' type of day with as we mentioned some very tough girls, this is Erin's first year at Minors and was hoping to emulate her sister Alanna who took a bronze medal in 2017, everything came down to her last contest where a victory over a girl from Pinewood JC would give her the medal and so it was! as she took her with a huge O-Soto-Gari, Bronze for Erin in her first year as a minor

That then concluded the day, all the medallists then took part in the Flag ceremony and received their medals and all of DJC began the long journey home and i had a now familiar solitary dinner at Gordano