Doneraile Taekwondo star claims first international gold medal

Doneraile native Shantelle Sheehan is the new ITF Taekwondo British Open champion after beating the top athletes from all over the United Kingdom last weekend.

Shantelle was competing at the ITF British Open Championships in Motherwell, Scotland in the junior female +65kg sparring competition. After two intense rounds of sparring, Sheehan, a first degree black belt, was crowned the winner.

Speaking to The Avondhu, the 17 year-old said she was thrilled with the win because it was her first ever international gold medal.

“Honestly I am really happy with my win. This is my last competition for this year, but I will be grading for my second dan black belt on December 9th in Cork.”

Shantelle will then take a break from international competition to study for her Leaving Certificate, but says she may still compete at national level.

Sheehan scooped the Junior Female Competitor of the Year award at this year’s Cork Martial Arts Promotions awards 2017/18 at the Gresham Metropole Hotel, Cork City and was named in the Ireland Taekwondo squad for the 2017 World Taekwondo Championships, which was hosted for the first time in Ireland.

She has also won bronze in the European Championships and was a silver medalist at the Dutch Open.

In 2019, she will aim to be selected for the European Championships. We wish her well on her journey.