History was made on the 15th and 16th of July when the Namibia Shotokan Karate Academy hosted the 8th JSKA World Karate Championships in Swakopmund.
Teams from all over the world arrived in Swakopmund as of Monday the 11th of July and thereafter the registration of all teams and the handing out of accreditation to all team members followed.
Entries for the competition were in excess of 1 200 which made this the largest karate event ever presented on Namibian soil.
On Friday the competition started sharply at 08:00, with competitors walking on to all six tatamis (floors). What then followed was a display of world-class karate with some of the best competitors in the world fiercely competing in the senior, veteran, masters and open divisions.
Two performances stood out at this championship as both De Wet Moolman and Holly Rye managed to achieve feats never accomplished before.
Moolman (Namibia reigning senior world champion) managed to win 4 gold (senior kumite, senior kata, open kata and senior team kumite) and 2 silver medals (open kumite and senior team kata) and Rye (Scotland reigning senior European kata champion) managed to win 5 gold (senior kata, senior kumite, senior team kumite, open kata and open kumite).
This is a sterling performance by both athletes, and their display is only matched by the absolute humbleness and character portrayed by these two great champions.
The countries attending all confirmed that a “new benchmark” has been set in terms of hosting world championships. They remarked that the beauty of Namibia and the hospitality of its people are unparalleled and something they will forever remember.
They complimented management of Shotokan Karate Academy for the military precision with which the event was presented and all expressed their appreciation for the quality and strength of Namibian karateka.
The results of the world championships are reflected below, and only the countries listed below were able to secure medals due to the fierce and stiff competition:
Country Gold Silver Bronze Total
Namibia 49 54 51 54
South Africa 20 24 24 68
Scotland 13 5 4 22
Germany 4 6 3 13
United Kingdom 3 1 1 5
Switzerland 3 2 1 6
Totals 92 92 84 268