The 2017 World Taekwondo Grand Prix is due to take place at London's Copper Box Arena from Friday (October 20) to Sunday (October 22) ©World Taekwondo

The Copper Box Arena, a venue used for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, is all set to host a World Taekwondo Grand Prix event and the World Para-Taekwondo Championships with action due to begin here in England’s capital tomorrow.

A total of 213 athletes from 56 countries, plus one refugee team, are due to compete across four male and four female Olympic weight categories at the Grand Prix, which is scheduled to be held from Friday (October 20) to Sunday (October 22).

It will be preceded by tomorrow’s World Para-Taekwondo Championships, which has attracted 263 athletes from a record-breaking 59 countries.

The Grand Prix is the third of four this year and comes less than a month after the conclusion of the second leg held in Morocco’s capital Rabat.

The victor in each category will win $5,000 (£3,800/€4,200) in prize money, while the silver medallist will receive $3,000 (£2,300/€2,500) and the two bronze medallists will go home with $1,000 (£760/€850) each.

The event, which will be officiated by 50 referees, will also offer participants the opportunity to secure Olympic ranking points.

"We are very excited to return to London and we have no doubt that the city will host a fantastic event," World Taekwondo President Chungwon Choue said.

"We have very fond memories of London from the Olympic Games in 2012.

"We know the city can put on excellent events and that Britain is a passionate, taekwondo-loving nation.

"But our sport has come on a long way over the last four years and this will be on display next week.

"We have introduced many innovations to make our competitions more exciting, more engaging for fans and fairer for our athletes."

Double Olympic champion Jade Jones is among the British athletes set to compete at the World Taekwondo Grand Prix ©Getty Images
Double Olympic champion Jade Jones is among the British athletes set to compete at the World Taekwondo Grand Prix ©Getty Images

Double Olympic champion Jade Jones will spearhead a 15-strong British squad at the Grand Prix.

The squad also includes two-time world gold medallist Bianca Walkden, but will not feature double Olympic medallist Lutalo Muhammad who has pulled out after claiming he is "not fighting fit".

Great Britain won three medals in Rabat last month with gold for Walkden and Mahama Cho as well as silver for Jones.

Jones, who triumphed when the World Grand Prix visited Manchester in 2013 and 2015, is looking forward to returning to London where she won her first Olympic title in 2012.

"It's going to be amazing going back," she told BBC Sport.

"I absolutely love competing in the UK so it's another chance to do it.

"It's crazy to think that just five years ago no one knew me at all.

"No one expected me to get gold there [at London 2012].

"Even though it's only been five years, it's been a long journey."

A total of 263 athletes from a record-breaking 59 countries are due to compete at the World Para-Taekwondo Championships ©World Taekwondo
A total of 263 athletes from a record-breaking 59 countries are due to compete at the World Para-Taekwondo Championships ©World Taekwondo

The World Para-Taekwondo Championships will provide athletes the chance to earn vital points as the qualification cycle for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games begins.

More than 50 referees will officiate the Championships, supported by the state-of-the-art Protector and Scoring System and instant video replay system in an attempt to ensure fair and accurate results.

It is claimed the significant increase in the number of athletes from the 2015 World Championships in Turkish city Samsun, which attracted athletes from 38 countries, reflects the dramatic rise in the global popularity of the sport in recent years.

World Taekwondo says it is committed to ensuring that the sport is as accessible as possible as it aims to deliver on its vision of taekwondo for all.

"In the two years since the last World Championships we have seen a huge rise in the number of athletes around the world practicing Para-taekwondo," Choue said.

"With more athletes than ever competing and the standard higher than ever, I am sure that this year’s World Championships will be the very best yet.

"Athletes will need to be on top of their game as they look to secure world ranking points towards qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and where better to compete than the world-class London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic venue, the Copper Box."

The kyorugi competitions at the World Championships will be divided into four sport classes with three male and three female weight categories.

There will also be poomsae sport classes for athletes with an intellectual impairment and for athletes with a motor impairment.

A record 47 athletes have registered in the poomsae sport classes.

Home favourite and three-time European champion Amy Truesdale is considered to be the one to beat in the women’s over 58 kilograms K44 category as she seeks to claim her second world title and first since 2014.

At the three previous events, the number one-ranked fighter has been Britain’s only representative.

On this occasion, she is joined by four team-mates who all train at the National Taekwondo Centre in Manchester - Matthew Bush, Katie Eley, Joseph Lane and Leif Thobroe.

"After riding solo all this time, it feels like we have a proper team," Truesdale, who won a bronze medal on her World Championship debut eight years ago, said.

"It feels like a proper team now and it’s been great to see more people at training.

"But it will still be tough.

"I have noticed a lot more competitors in my weight division this time.

"However, after fighting overseas at my previous World Championships, I’m excited to finally get a chance to showcase Para-taekwondo to a home audience."