By Shawn Regan
---- — HAVERHILL — Henry Cejudo, 2008 U.S. Olympic gold medalist in wrestling, will be headlining a clinic at the high school Sunday.
Cejudo, 25, became the youngest American wrestler to win Olympic gold when he defeated Japan's Tomohiro Matsunago at 121 pounds in Bejing. He is coming here at the invitation of former national taekwondo champion and Haverhill resident Michael Tang for his "The American Dream" camp series.
The clinic is from 2 to 7 p.m. in the high school gymnasium, 137 Monument St. The cost is $50, but Tang said financial assistance and team rates are available and that nobody will be turned away due to inability to pay.
The clinic is open to wrestlers of all ages and levels with aspirations of training or competing at the regional, national or international levels, Tang said.
Tang, head taekwondo coach for Harvard University since 2007, runs Michael Tang's World Class Martial Arts and Fitness in Haverhill's Ward Hill at 40 Rogers Road.
A three-time national champion and U.S. team member who was part of the 2012 U.S. Olympic delegation in London, Tang said his focus now is developing young talent in Olympic contact sports, including taekwondo, wrestling, and boxing. His gym also offers high-level instruction and training in Brazilian Jujitsu, mixed martial arts and yoga, and he has trained a number of top UFC fighters.
"It’s going to a place for elite athletes, but also for children and adult beginners who just want to learn Olympic-style martial arts and sportsmanship,” Tang said of his Haverhill gym shortly after returning from the London games last summer. "We’re going to be bringing top Olympic athletes to Haverhill. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I’ve received a lot of support from top athletes and people in the area.”
Tang said he has already produced numerous junior and senior class national and collegiate champions.
"I'm hoping to inspire local athletes with another one of my world class teammates, Henry Cejudo," Tang said about Sunday's clinic.
For more information or to register by today's deadline, email Tang at CoachTang@Mac.com.