BAKU, Azerbaijan (Jun 4, 2013) - World Taekwondo President Chungwon Choue today acclaimed the historic success of the Baku 2023 World Taekwondo Championships which showcased the very best of the sport and engaged new digital audiences.
The World Championships saw nearly 1,000 athletes from 144 registered member nations plus one Refugee Teamcompete across seven days of competition. A total of 24 countries from each of the five continents won at least one medal with the 16 gold medals won by 9 different countries demonstrating the global reach and strength of the sport.
The event generated record-breaking engagement on social media, with 21.7 million views for the hashtag #Baku2023wtc on TikTok cementing the sport’s position as the number one combat sport on the platform. More than 1.6 million unique livestream views were also generated on TikTok for seven days of competition.
Of the 64 athletes who medalled, 10 were first-time World Champions. An additional 31 athletes achieved their first-ever medals at the World Championships. Among them, the majority are below 24 years old, signifying a generational shift which will have a lasting impact on the Taekwondo scene in the years to come.
Korea finished top of the men’s medal standing and Türkiye led the women’s standings.
The World Championships also witnessed the largest ever Refugee Team with 13 refugee athletes reflecting the federation’s commitment to ensuring Taekwondo is a sport for all and empowers those in need. Among the Refugee Team was Yehya Al-Ghotani who is the first athlete from the refugee camp in Azraq, Jordan, to compete at a World Taekwondo Championships.
Speaking following the successful World Championships, World Taekwondo President Choue said:
“The 2023 World Taekwondo Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan, will be remembered as one of the most historic, and was an excellent showcase of our Olympic sport on the occasion of our 50th founding anniversary. With so many countries winning medals and a new generation of young athletes coming through we can be very confident about our sport’s future.
“This event was not just about elite sport. It also embodied Taekwondo values of tolerance, inclusiveness, and respect, and contributed to the IOC’s call for peace.”
In line with the recommendations of the IOC, World Taekwondo approved Individual Neutral Athletes to compete at the World Championships once they had undergone a stringent three-step verification process. The verification process was conducted in a transparent and fair manner, which instilled confidence in all participating nations. The 23 AIN athletes who were verified as eligible to participate were treated like any other Taekwondo athlete – with respect, and equal rights and responsibilities in every area of the venue.
At the Closing Ceremony Baku officially handed the flag over to the hosts of the 2025 World Taekwondo Championships, Wuxi, China. Awards were also presented in recognition of the standout performances from the Championships:
Most Valuable Player Men – Park Tae-Joon (Korea)
Most Valuable Player Women – Merve Dincel (Türkiye)
Best Team Coach Men – Hongyoub An (Korea)
Best Team Coach Women – Ali Shahin (Turkiye)
Best Referee Men – Ayman Adarbeh (Jordan)
Best Referee Women – Byung Hee Kim (Brunei)
Active Participation Award – Canada
Fighting Spirit Award – Azerbaijan