By Lauren Mattera

WTF sign Host City Agreement with Puebla MexicoNovember 29 - The World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) has signed the Host City contact for its 2013 World Championships with the Mexican city of Puebla.

The agreement was signed during a ceremony today hosted by the Mayor of Peubla, Maestro Eduardo Rivera Pérez, at the City Hall.

Puebla was awarded the Championships in April by the WTF, when it chosen ahead of Croatian city Split. 

It will be the first time that Mexico has hosted the biennial Championships and the first time they have been in that area of the world since Colombian city Guayaquil held them in 1982.

"We are delighted to be staging our World Championships at this spectacular venue in this beautiful city," said WTF President Chungwon Choue.

"It is a proud occasion when we can take our premier competition outside the Olympic Games to one of our 204 Member Nation Associations for the very first time.

"Taekwondo has experienced a huge boom in uptake globally since the success of London 2012, and we are confident that our partners in Mexico can help us continue that trend.

"The global taekwondo family looks forward to an outstanding World Championships in 2013."

Mexico have a good record of taekwondo medals as Maria del Rosario Espinoza won gold in Beijing 2008, and went on to be Mexico's flag bearer at London 2012 where she went on to win a bronze medal for her country.

WTF demonstration in Puebla City HallAfter the ceremony, the WTF demonstration team performed for the audience

Mayor Pérez added: "Taekwondo is now a global sport whose tradition has grown.

"The Mexican Taekwondo Federation was recognised by the WTF in 1973, making it one of the [WTF's] first member nations.

"It is with huge pleasure I announce that the city of Puebla will have the honour of organising this great event, of international proportions.

"This is the first time that an individual international sport event will have been held in our city. We are very proud that the WTF has entrusted this to us."

The Host City Agreement was signed by representatives of WTF, the Mexican Taekwondo Federation, the Governments of the city and state of Puebla along with Mexico's National Commission of Physical Culture and Sport.

WTF secretary general Jean-Marie Ayer added: "Over the past two days, we have met with members of the Local Organising Committee, the city and state of Puebla and the Mexican Taekwondo Federation to discuss their preparations for the 2013 WTF World Taekwondo Championships.

"The stakeholders have done so much already that their Local Organising Committee is shaping up quite nicely.

"The venue of the competitions is a very, very impressive facility.

"We're expecting big crowds, and the Puebla Exhibition Centre will have no problem accommodating them.

"I believe at this rate the Local Organising Committee could create a taekwondo competition every bit as extraordinary as the London 2012 Olympic taekwondo at the ExCeL Centre."

The 21st WTF World Taekwondo Championships will be taking place between July 15 and 21,  2013, in the Puebla Exhibition Centre which is the largest venue of its kind in South America.

The competition first launched back in 1973 in Seoul, South Korea, and has continued to be staged every two years at various venues across the globe including Latin America, North America and Europe.

Last year Iran claimed the men's world champions title in Gyeongju, South Korea marking history as the first country to knock South Korea off the top spot since the event began.

While, China achieved similar in the women's division at the 2009 WTF World Taekwondo Championships in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

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