Judo club alumni fly their flag with medals at Games

First published in Sport

TWO former members of Samurai were successful in the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, with Danny Williams winning gold and Kelly Edwards taking silver.

Edwards, 23, joined Samurai when she was 13 to supplement the training and coaching she was getting at her much smaller hometown club in Telford. She travelled the 33 miles to Samurai two or three times each week for around four years before following Kate Walker by moving to Bath University and later to the British Judo Performance Centre at Dartford, where they shared a flat together.

Edwards returned briefly to Samurai to train before moving to the Scottish Performance Centre in Edinburgh.

To be considered for selection at this level, any judo player must be training at one of the four designated British fulltime centres.

Now having moved to the 52kg category, she reached the final but lost to Louise Rannicks of Scotland and settled for silver.

Williams, 24, started judo in Shrewsbury before transferring to Samurai.

He ended up at another fulltime centre, this time at Camberley in Sussex, where he still trains.

In Glasgow, he saw off New Zealand’s Adrian Leat to take gold.

Samurai had six members helping to organise the judo at the Games.

This side of the club’s activities gets far fewer headlines than the competitors, but the club remains Britain’s strongest when it comes to event officials. They had eight officials at the London Olympics.

lFor further information about Samurai visit the website at samurai.org.uk

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