Sport

Gauteng represented well in the KZN karate tourney

Ekurhuleni Municipality assisted OKD karatekas with a sponsorship of a bus and staffing logistics to accommodate 60 people.

International Karate Organisation (IKO) Matsushima Gauteng raised the Gauteng flag at the Fourth Junior Development Tournament (FJDT) at the Umlazi Indoor Sports Centre on June 17.

The Gauteng team did well, despite winning fewer fights compared to the hosts IKO Matsushima KwaZulu-Natal (KZN).

IKO Matsushima KZN won 42 trophies. They are represented by six different dojos: the Umlazi Baker, Glebe, Honbu, Ogwini, U Dojo and Ndongeni.

Leboha Mmolawa got the second position.

IKO Matsushima Gauteng won 22 trophies, represented by three dojos including Oyama Katlehong Dojo (OKD) from Khutsong Nurses Home at Nhlapo section, Oyama Germiston Dojo and Riverlea Dojo.

Due to other commitments, the other Gauteng dojos from Vaal, Soweto and Thembisa could not honour the tournament fixture.

They also awarded Gauteng a trophy and medal for presenting the most fighters in the tournament.

Umlazi Baker hosted the tournament under the leadership of Sensei Mabhiyoza Nene.

IKO Matsushima Gauteng attended under the leadership of Shihan Noah Bhembe, represented by executive members sensei Cyril Mncwango and sensei Judas Ngobeni.

Ekurhuleni Municipality assisted OKD karatekas in sponsoring a bus and the logistics to accommodate 60 people.

All the fighters before the tournament.

According to the organiser Nene, the tournament was well-received and supported by various organisations.

“We aim to develop our children, which is why we host tournaments for them to prove how strong they are and to determine whether they are ready to compete internationally. We develop them from a young age,” said Mabhiyoza.

The secretary for OKD sempai Angie Lithebe said the road to success is paved with challenges, citing the fighters are from different backgrounds, are passionate and equipped to contribute positively to the community and the organisation.

Leboha Mmolawa got the second position.

She said she believes all their students fought well. However, they had a challenge of fighters placed in a heavier division because of the shortage of weight divisions.

“We also realised some students are not used to head guards and shin pads, which made it difficult for them to defend themselves against their opponents,” said Lithebe.

She said despite these challenges they are pleased as some of their students had their first-time experience stepping into the tatami.

Njabulo Motloung (second, left) from Oyama Katlehong Dojo came second.

“Some students had a hard time but conquered, others were overpowered, and some were not skilled enough to be in the tournament. We support one another in learning, growing and encouraging the highest good.”

Lithebe expressed her gratitude to the community, shop owners, the City of Ekurhuleni, and its staff in logistics for making it possible for them to travel to Umlazi to compete.

Sensei Cyril Mncwango from Gauteng (left), sensei Mabhiyoza Nene from Kwa Zulu-Natal and sensei Judas Ngobeni from Gauteng.

She also thanked shihan Noah Bhembe, sensei Cyril Mncwango, sensei Lucky Shabalala, sensei Judas Ngobeni and shodan Ruben for their passionate support and contribution to the organisation.

“We constantly need sponsorship from small and large companies to buy karate protective clothes and sports equipment. We need head guards, shin pads, groin cups, breast protectors, foot guards, first aid kits, punching bags and dumbbells to help our aspiring champions,” she said.

She noted transport was also a challenge, as they intend to attend all national and development tournaments.
Anyone who will help the OKD can contact Lithebe at 081 865 6970 or email oyamakyokarateclub@gmail.com

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