Karate world champs in Swakopmund

History will be made this weekend when the Namibia Shotokan Karate Academy will host the 8th JSKA World Karate Championships at the Dome in Swakopmund. An estimated 370 athletes from 14 countries will participate in the prestigious event with a new world champion to be determined in the end.

The Dome in Swakopmund indeed is a world class facility. This was once again underlined on Wednesday evening, when Erongo Governor Cleophas Mutjavikua welcomed the senior Karate masters from various countries. “I actually had another event tonight, but this occasion is of such magnitude that I just had to be here,” he said and welcomed the various athletes.
The JSKA World Karate Championships will officially kick off today from 8:00. After the elimination and finals of individual categories Kata/Kumite an award ceremony will take place at 17:00. The event continues on Saturday with a march-on and a ceremony to start at 9:00. From 11:15 there the senior and open division final events commence. An award Ceremony will take place at 16:00 followed by a Sayonara Party at 19:00.
In total there are an estimated 370 athletes attending the event with Namibia having entered 112 individuals. The Karate World championship might very well be the biggest yet as more than 1000 entries have been recorded with athletes participating in various divisions. Usually the entries during World Championships are about 800.
“With this facility it has always been our dream to host events of this magnitude and build bridges to other countries,” said Horst Fritze, one of the Dome trustees, during the welcoming this week. Mutjavikua thanked the attendees on behalf of the Namibian government, saying that “next time you come back as a tourist.”
The Namibia Shotokan Karate Academy has been attending the JSKA World Karate Championships since 2004. It is hosted every second year. After the last World Championship in Italy, Namibia boasts 7 new world champions, beating many world class teams enabling them to obtain the 2nd place overall in terms of medals won by coun-tries. Whilst Namibia did not tender to host the event, (a tender was submitted by the United Kingdom), the hosting of the 2016 JSKA Sho-tokan World Championship was offered to Namibia. This offer was extended to Namibia as the JSKA management (Shihankai) was astounded by the excellence of Namibia karate, and was impressed by the discipline and good conduct displayed by the Namibia karateka and the quality of management.
Sensei Willem Burger (Shotokan Chief Instructor) attended the JSKA European Championship held in Glasgow (Scotland) in July 2015, to promote the 2016 JSKA World Karate Championship in Namibia. “We started this event 22 years ago with a small tournament. All these years later we have elevated the sport to a world level. The results of our development will be seen this weekend,” Sensei Burger said.
The public is invited to attend the event and observe the participants in their form. Entrance fee is N$100 per person.

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