By Nick Butler

Taekwondo in Australia has been merged into oine unified bodyOctober 28 - A unified body has been set-up to represent taekwondo in Australia after an agreement was reached between the two different organisations who claimed to run the sport in the country. 

Sport Taekwondo Australia (STA) and Taekwondo Australia have entered into a Heads of Agreement and, as a consequence, a single national governing body will be responsible for the sport.

The merger has been brokered with the assistance of both the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) and the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) and is the result of months of negotiations.

The new body will aim to provide "athletes, coaches and officials with a unified pathway and deliver immediate access for everyone to participate and compete in the sport at all levels, including at WTF sanctioned events," claimed Australian officials.

A new Board is also set to be announced, with equal representation from both STA and TA in addition to an independent chair.

This should ensure that the sport is governed in a structure consistent with other major Australian sports.

Lauren Burns celebrates after winning Australia's first and, to date only, Olympic taekwondo title in front of a home crowd in SydneyLauren Burns celebrates after winning Australia's first and - so far only - Olympic taekwondo title in front of a home crowd at Sydney in 2000

When made its Olympic debut at Sydney 2000 Australian won two medals, a gold for Lauren Burns in the under 49 kilogram class and silver for Daniel Trenton in the over 80kg.

They have not won another medal since.

Two Australians competed at London 2012, Safwan Khalil and Carmen Marton, but failed to make an impact.

But, as part of their "Campaign Rio" unveiled last week, Australia is targeting success in sports other than their traditional strengths.

The unification announced in taekwondo is therefore a key component of this as it should increase administrative efficiency and produce competitive improvements.

The ASC has committed to work with both the STA and TA to complete the merger process and will continue to provide ongoing support to improve the capability of the new organisation.

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