Grand Master Chi Duong is back in Carson City after a trip halfway around the world to compete in the Poomsae Taekwondo 2018 World Championships.
He returned with a second Silver Medal and had to gut it out to claim it.
Duong won four matches, despite a couple of bad knees.
Duong’s knees were so bad he needed a cane when arriving in Taipei, Taiwan after a 13-hour flight.
He still managed to win four matches to get to the championship match before losing in the finals to a Korean he had lost to in the semifinals in 2014. His opponent, Byung Chae Lee, didn’t compete in 2016 when Duong last won silver in Lima, Peru. When he won the bronze in 2014, he became the first male individual to bring home a medal for the U.S. in the world poomsae championships.
“The differences this year was that I was competing without both ACLs due to an accident last fall,” said Duong. “And this year there were 14 people in my division, which was both challenging and excellent, pushing me hard for the next (World Poomsae Championships) in Copenhagen in 2020.”
Duong said his knees “hurt like hell. But if you want it bad enough, you just do it!”
The U.S. won 17 medals — third most of any country in the championships. Included were two golds, six silvers and nine bronzes.
Duong says he will not need surgery on the knees. He can get back to speed for the 2020 games through physical therapy.
Duong is retired from teaching taekwondo at his school, but does still give private lessons.