Hendrik Ekema kicks his way into the record books for St. MaartenPOSTED: 07/20/16 6:55 PM
St. Maarten News—After winning two gold medals in the side and back kicking, Henderikus (EH) Ekema closed off the final day of the World Taekwondo championships with a bronze from a pool of 60 competitors. It has been six years since Ekema has not stepped into the ring, but in the months going into the championships, he had an incredible urge again this time to represent St. Maarten, the island which he has now made his home working a facility manager for the Government of St. Maarten since 2012.
“We can say that I did good and came 3rd place with point stop in a pool of 60 competitors. I lost from the later World Champion, because of a few stupid mistakes. I always stay positive and laugh,” he said.
However in addition to the bronze medal, Ekema who was accompanied by Emmanuel ‘Mano’ Richardson on the trip to Birmingham, United Kingdom has also become the two time world champion in side kicking and with the back kicking that earned him two Gold medals. “Enjoy the game, play and make my points. In second fight I kicked full on the elbow and my foot was distended. I didn’t want to stop my third fight, because we didn’t come from the Caribbean to quit, we come here to fight. Unfortunately in the second half of my third fight, I give it on points away because my injury was getting worse. This appointment became the World Champion. No worries Sint Maarten will come back for that belt,” he said.
He thanked his parents, Anna Ekema, Erwin Buurmeijer , assistant strength and cardio trainer Luis Alberto Gutierrez Monterrey, Jason Juliet and friends for supporting him all the way. “I also want to specially thank my fiancé Bella Salsocia for having my back no matter what. This is for you and for our son,” he said. “Finally there is somebody that deserve all the respect. This man who has invested hours and months of hard training with me in the gym and outside. Six days a week and pushed me to this high level. Lots of respect how he coached me the last two days. He guided me and motivated me on how a coach should do. He knows what an athlete needs and how you get there. Emanuel E-mann Richardson thank you for this incredible road. Bless you my friend,” he added.