Michael Harvey wins taekwondo World silver

By Nick HopeBBC Olympic sports reporter

Michael Harvey clinched silver at the Taekwondo World Championships in Gyeongju, South Korea after losing the final in the -63kg category.

The Mancunian beat Le Huynh Chau 10-5 to set up a final against South Korean Lee Dae-hoon, which he lost 5-2.

But Harvey took Great Britain's medal tally to four with his performance.

In the women's +73kg, Liverpool's Bianca Walkden beat Ivana Zagar in sudden death but lost to Briseida Acosta Balarezo in the last 16.

"Bianca's achievement was just to get to these World Championships," said Great Britain performance director Gary Hall. "To take part three and a half months after a career threatening injury is remarkable."

Harvey, too, was pleased with his efforts despite his final defeat.

"I gave a good performance," said the 21-year-old. "He was just better than me and there isn't much more I could have done.

"The first two rounds were fairly even and I had a chance with one kick. But while I am disappointed I would have taken silver before I came out here.

"Watching my team matches earlier in the week boosted my confidence and to come away from a World Championship with four medals, you can't moan about that."

And Hall admitted he could not have asked for more from his squad in South Korea: "To get four medals in 10 events is just incredible.

"If anyone had said before we came out here we'd win four then I would have taken it any day of the week."

In the previous day's action, Damon Sansum's challenge in the -87kg division was ended by a 15-8 loss to European Champion Carlo Molfetta.

Sansum, 24, had earlier beaten his opening two opponents (Aydin Ozalp of Australia and Sagynysh Kalimbetov from Kazakhstan) but found Italian Molfetta ultimately too strong.

But while the scoreline made it appear a clear victory, the fighters were tied at 7-7 heading into the final round and Sansum was left cursing an early points decision that went against him.

"Coming into the event I really thought I could win the division," Sansum told BBC Sport.

"He [Molfetta] is a top guy, but a few decisions didn't go my way - I know I hit him but I'd used up my appeal and that's the way it is."

Sansum only took up Taekwondo as part of an English Institute of Sport initiative nine months ago, having switched from kick-boxing, where he was a world champion.

His progress since then has been remarkable, winning medals at the Paris Open towards the end of 2010 and the German Open in March this year.

"This sport is so powerful, so my power has actually improved since training with these guys, but it can get a little confusing occasionally when I'm used to one set of rules and in this sport you get penalised for doing certain things.

"I think that after another nine months I should be able to take the division, or at the very least get a medal, so it's disheartening as no-one likes to lose, but when you look at facts then I should be happy."

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