Olympics: Kurt Barbosa falls to superior Korean opponent in taekwondo


Posted at Jul 24 2021 11:21 AM | Updated as of Jul 24 2021 09:35 PM

Olympics: Kurt Barbosa falls to superior Korean opponent in taekwondo 1
South Korea's Jang Jun and Barbosa compete in the taekwondo men's -58kg elimination round bout during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on July 24, 2021. Javier Soriano, AFP

(UPDATE) The Philippines' Kurt Barbosa lost 26-6 to Jang Jun of South Korea in their men's -58 kilogram opening-round match at the Olympics in Tokyo on Saturday. 

Jang is the world No. 1-ranked fighter in his division and a 2-time world champion and multiple Grand Prix champion. 

Barbosa would have had a chance for a bronze medal — via repechage — had Jang gone all the way to the final. 

But Jang lost to Tunisia's Mohamed Khalil Jendoubi 16-11 in the semifinals. 

The repechage allows losers to finalists to get additional matches that, should they run them out, qualify them for a bronze. 

Barbosa was thankful for the opportunity to compete in the Olympics.


A post shared by Kurt Barbosa (@kurtesyyy)

In his Instagram post, the Abra native said he gained valuable experience in these Games.

"I believe that losing is part of the game and it is where we learn and get the courage to fight again. We are just getting started, I will surely apply all of my experiences on my next games and I hope you are all still with me until we get that victory," he said.

Barbosa lost to Jang via point gap, a result when there is a 20-point difference at the end of the second round, at any time during the final round or both.

Barbosa is a Southeast Asian Games gold medalist who qualified in May, thanks to a thrilling come-from-behind victory. 

But he ran into a formidable opponent in Jang. 

Barbosa thanked his supporters and his family and vowed to come back stronger.

"To Philippine Sports Commission, MVPSF, Philippine Olympic Committee, Philippine Taekwondo Association and of course to Grandmaster Hong, I will be forever grateful for the support and assistance your giving," he said.

"At sa mahal kong Pilipinas, ikinararangal kong dalhin ang pangalan mo sa isang malaking patimpalak, hanggang sa muli. HINDI AKO SUSUKO. Salamat mga kababayan, babawi tayo, tiwala lang."

For breaking news and latest developments on the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, visit https://news.abs-cbn.com/tokyo-olympics


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