Serangoon Junior College (SRJC) installed themselves as the new powerhouses in schools taekwondo, after clinching both the A Division boys' and girls' overall titles at the Schools National Taekwondo Championships at Toa Payoh Sports Hall on Thursday.
It was the first time SRJC had swept the overall titles in the A Division competition, and head coach Leon Koh said that dedication and investment of resources were the key attributes to their success.
When the 42-year-old first joined the team, players were low in morale, so he decided to develop a spirit of sporting excellence by setting a three-year plan with the students and teachers to bring Serangoon's taekwondo to a next level.
Within three years, SRJC won their first overall title for the girls' team last year and set the stage for this year's dominance.
Koh said that the secret to the school's rapid progress is a focus on basic foundations during their training. He said: "The players only have a few weeks to prepare for the championships, with studies being their priority, so I have to ensure that each session focus more on the basic strikes and blocks, as well as the athlete's general fitness rather than simply achieving advanced technical moves."
It was a personal battle won for the elated SRJC captain Jasmine Lim, whose chances of clinching a second consecutive medal almost got derailed by injuries. The 17-year-old said: " I had a flexor injury last month and it felt really painful today. But I wanted to give my all for the team and school, and I am glad to deliver the team goals that we have set this year."
Represented by 19 girls and 14 boys, the team's medal haul included nine golds, nine silvers and 13 bronzes for the Poomsae team and individual events.