Shotokan Karate Academy

Results from 48th KUGB National Championships

Friday 02 May 2014

Our annual trip to the KUGB National Championships at the NIA Birmingham took place on Saturday 3rd May 2014.

Our combined Shotokan Karate Academy/Manchester University squads donned gis and belts to perform kata and take part in kumite matches with other clubs across the UK.

All our members showed great spirit during the eliminations with new member Baptiste looking particularly impressive in the senior men's kumite.  And we were very lucky to have two of our most senior and experienced members coaching throughout the day - thank you Vicky Phillips and Dean Field, joined also by Stuart Gordon during the finals.  Thank you also to Matt for coaching as well - he was disappointed not to be competing this year but his ribs were a little too delicate (thanks Baptiste!!!)

Our club chief instructor Sensei Garry Harford was one of the senior referees throughout the day but I never cease to be amazed at how he combines refereeing with also catching all the little mistakes some of our members make in the kata - usually "addressed" at the very next training session back at the club!

Another of our senior members, Amina Kasar, was refereeing during the eliminations before switching to "paparazzi" style photographer during the finals - can't wait to see the photos!

At the start of the finals, long-standing members of the KUGB were awarded with their ceritficates - two of our members received theirs: Tim O'Rourke 40 years membership and Kerry Lee 20 years membership.  Congratulations - wishing you many more years within the KUGB family.

Anyway, results:

Our women's team kumite consisting of Cristina Finta, Victoria Taiwo Ogunseitan, Erica "Kiki" (or should it be "No Kiai"?!) Pericas Hewitt and Vanessa Macintyre - fought admirably but came up against Halewood (again) in the finals. The Halewood team have dominated this event in recent years, with an 8th win this year.  We had to settle for silver again.  Well done girls, and of course well done to Halewood.

Cristina Finta was in the ladies kata final again and performed a strong Goju Shiho Sho kata to take silver behind Holly Sterling - well done!

And ladies kumite - our little pocket rocket Cristina Finta powered through the semi-finals against Kirstie James of Merthyr Tydfil to face Caroline McGrath of Ronin in the final.  This was a tense, evenly-matched final, with extensions before finally Cristina triumphed.  National Ladies Kumite Champion!!!!!  Never seen anyone so excited as Cristina!

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