By Abdul Kerimkhanov
The 2018 World Taekwondo season ended in Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) with the Grand Prix Final being followed by the Team Championships and Gala Awards.
Azerbaijan’s capital Baku was a host to all three events in 2016, while last year’s events took place in Abidjan in the Ivory Coast.
The competition among teams ended on November 25.
Eight teams were competing in men’s category with Iran, Russia and South Korea considered the leading contenders.
The Azerbaijani team lost to Russia in the semifinal and the national sportsmen had to fight for bronze medal.
National team, led by head coach Reza Mehmandust, overcame Kazakhstan and took third place.
Iranian team grabbed victory in the championship by beating the Russian team in the final.
The Azerbaijani team included Olympic champion Radik Isayev (+80 kg), world champion Milad Beigi Kharchegani (80 kg), Gasym Magomedov (58 kg), Magomed Mammadov (68 kg) and Payam Gobadi (+87 kg).
National team will return home on November 26.
Taekwondo is one of the most popular sports in Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan Taekwondo Federation was established in 1992. The National Taekwondo Federation has trained many prominent athletes since its founding. Many of those athletes now enjoy international recognition.
Kamaladdin Heydarov has been elected the President of Azerbaijan Taekwondo Federation in 1999. He is also vice president of the World Taekwondo Federation.
Fuzuli Musayev was elected as the First Vice President of Azerbaijan Taekwondo Federation in 2001.
The Federation’s training facility houses new, state-of-the-art training equipment and has a proud history of bringing up more than 500 black belt recipients and athletes.