Charlotte takes on Europe’s finest

PUBLISHED: 16:49 19 July 2007 | UPDATED: 21:45 29 May 2010

Charlotte Wraith with coach Steve Sandy

Charlotte Wraith with coach Steve Sandy

Charlotte Wraith took on the best young judo players in Europe at the European Cadet Championships in Vittoriosa, Malta, taking seventh place in the under 40k category. The 15-year-old from Great Dunmow put in an impressive performance despite being hampe

Charlotte Wraith took on the best young judo players in Europe at the European Cadet Championships in Vittoriosa, Malta, taking seventh place in the under 40k category.

The 15-year-old from Great Dunmow put in an impressive performance despite being hampered by a hand injury that she picked up in training.

She was given a bye in her first bout and was unfortunate to lose her fight against a girl from the Ukraine, throwing herself, in eagerness.

Next up was a Bulgarian, who she comfortably threw for 10. However, she lost her next fight against a Turkish girl who made a beeline for her heavily bandaged thumb.

"I was pleased with seventh place, but think if my thumb hadn't been injured I would have done a lot better," said Charlotte. "I really enjoyed it though and it was a great experience."

Charlotte's coach at Redbridge, Steve Sandy, agreed.

"I thought she did really well and if she hadn't been fighting with an injury she would have gone on to win her fight and would then have been almost guaranteed bronze as the next opponent was really struggling with an injury," he said.

"It's a shame as I think she did exceptionally well. She was the youngest age group there though, so she gets another chance next year.

"I'm incredibly proud of her and she showed some very promising signs and is set to be a big star of the future.

"Since joining my club I'm really pleased with her progress and everyone is commenting on how much she has sharpened up."

Charlotte feels she can take a lot from the tournament and is already looking forward to next year's championships.

"I learnt a lot especially as it was the first time I have been at a competition with the whole of Europe, so I got to see all of my competitors in one place.

"It was good to see a lot of different fighting styles and I learnt that different countries all teach a different way of fighting.

"This tournament next year is the next big thing for this stage of judo, but I have to qualify first which I'm confident of doing."

Charlotte added: "I would like to thank Dunmow Rotary club for their grant of £500 which has helped me travel abroad with the squad. They have been a great help.

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