Karatekas eye medal haul

ZIMBABWE’S top karatekas are confident of a medal haul at the ongoing Q Challenge International Kata Championships being held on a global scale under the auspices of the Mediterranean Karate Alliance.

BY FREEMAN MAKOPA

The competition is being held virtually and the registration of videos run between November 9-22 and the final result will be announced on December 13. Contestants from all over the world will upload videos of technical demonstrations for evaluation by an international panel of judges during a real time stream.

ZKU treasurer George Maphosa confirmed Zimbabwe’s participation, adding that hopes are high that they will scoop more medals at the championships
“Our participation in the Q Challenge comes hot on the heels of Zimbabwe’s triumphs in the Online World Kata Championships in September. You may recall an impressive haul of medals scooped there by our athletes, including a gold medal won by Vincent Fambira of ZimNinja Academy. We look forward to our athletes continuing to do the nation proud,” he said.

“Historically, it has been our full contact practitioners who have achieved the visible successes in karate internationally. ZKU is delighted to see the semi-contact side of our membership also rising to prominence, especially in these trying times,” Maphosa added.

The Zimbabwe Karate Union (ZKU) has risen to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic by focusing on the competitive exploits of its semi-contact affiliates. This will see the country being represented by ZKU athletes in the Q Challenge International Kata Championships to be held in December.

ZKU president Stephen Charandura said although COVID-19 affected the sporting discipline, however he said they remain committed to promoting the facets of karate.

“Karate is a rich and multi-faceted discipline that promotes self-improvement as much as self-defence. The pandemic has imposed obvious challenges for our full contact affiliates, whose tournaments have had to be called off this year. We remain committed to promoting all facets of karate and are thus excited to see our semi-contact practitioners turning that challenge into an opportunity to shine a light on other aspects of our discipline,” he said.

ZimNinja Academy founder and chief instructor Wilfred Mashaya told NewsDay Sport that preparations were proceeding well and optimism is high in the camp. “We are really working hard and training daily as the submission deadline approaches. There is a lot of new talent that we have been developing quietly and are keen to unveil to the world,” he said.
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