Gaborone — Organisers of the annual Gaborone Open International Karate Championships have promised a more bigger and better tournament this year.
Top-drawer karate bouts are expected to take centre stage at the Al Nur English Medium School Hall in Block 8 on June 8.
Speaking in an interview on June 6, one of the organisers, Sensei Ofentse Bakwadi said the 9th edition of the tournament, which has been one of the leading karate tournaments on the local scene looks set to be more exciting as it would showcase some of the finest karatekas in the region; an indication that the sport has been elevated to a higher level.
Fresh from an impressive performance at the closely contested Region 5 karate championships hosted in Namibia last month, the local karatekas have heightened their preparations for this year's karate extravaganza in their bid to make a positive impression ahead of the Union of Africa Karate Federations (UFAK) junior and senior championships, which are penciled for Gaborone in August.
High tempo action is therefore expected to take centre stage as karatekas will also be keen to impress in their bid to advance to amongst other regional competitions; the Cape Town Hayashi-Ha open.
The tournament will feature amongst others Africa senior kata silver medalist, Bakwadi, Africa male kumite runner up, Quinton Mosupiemang, Africa female kata bronze medalist, Entle Maungwa, region five kumite champion, region five kata and kumite sensation, Lentle Tanyala and US open champion, Kao Nsala.
Another interesting kumite sensation, Olorato Ngwebula, who won gold in Namibia last month, is expected to participate in the boy's 15 years individual kumite.
Local karatekas will find tough opposition from the visiting lads who have already confirmed participation from Zimbabwe, South Africa, Zambia and Namibia.
<i>Source : BOPA</i>