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Moore looks to World Cup at home

Published:Sunday | August 3, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Ainsley Walters, Sunday Gleaner Writer

ADRIAN MOORE is being groomed as a medal prospect for the International Taekwondo Federation (ITF) World Cup set for Montego Bay's convention Centre, August 26-30.

Moore, a member of Jamaica's combined martial arts team, was recently stopped by one of the world's most celebrated ITF fighters, Malaysia-born Hong Looi, during the International Sports Karate Association's US Open Night of Champions in Orlando, Florida.

However, the Jamaican said his loss to Looi, who fights out of Ireland, will serve him well as he prepares for the biggest martial arts tournament ever held in the Caribbean.

"It was my first time on the big stage so I was very nervous but it didn't affect my mindset during the fight," explained Moore, a middleweight bronze medallist at the Quebec 2012 ITF Pan Am Championships.

"Looi is a former world and European champion. Fighting somebody at that high standard, I learnt some stuff. I held my own against him. I felt like I accomplished something, holding my own against one of the most decorated fighters in ITF."

Looi has numerous world and European titles to his credit. He is a three-time Open Dutch sparring champion (2012-2014), 2014 European Vice Team Sparring Champion; 2013 World Team Sparring Champion; 2012 European Sparring Champion and 2011 World Vice Sparring Champion.

"The experience was great. It's one of the fights I lost that I didn't feel upset or anything about. I took it as a stepping stone to be a better fighter," Moore pointed out.

Jason McKay, combined team manager, said choosing a tough opponent for Moore wasn't by chance.

"At the US Open's Night of Champions, it is the best from the respective disciplines who fight or demonstrate technical skills.

"It's just to show that in previous years when we had Kenneth Edwards, Nicholas Dusard and Sheckema Cunningham winning, they all faced quality opponents.

"It's no coincidence that Edwards went on to become the first Jamaican to qualify for the Olympics, Cunningham won an ITF World Championships bronze medal and Dusard landed International Sport Kickboxing Association gold," McKay pointed out.