12th Legends Open, Bracknell March 2012

Saturday 10th March saw Sensei Graham take 22 SKCE members off to Bracknell for the 12th Legends Open. We had such an array of competitors, from 7 years old to …hmm… much older, first timers to seasoned competitors. However, all had one thing in common, a true desire to do their very best.

The day started with the kata events. In the under 12yrs up to 4th kyu, Lucy Bradish displayed strong kata to get through the first couple of rounds and into the final 8. In the black & brown belt group all put in a strong performances and 5 out of 6 of who made it through to the next round. This was a tough learning experience for our young competitors. After achieving the joint highest score (with Joshua Han) in the 1st round Oliver Hood misheard the judge and performed a blinder of a kata, but it was the wrong one! Little7 year old Hariram Sathyakumar, showed bigger children how it was done by also getting into the second round along with Jodi Evagelista, and his older brother Abiram narrowly missed a place in the final. Joshua Han, however, was outstanding and raised his kata to a level we had never before seen from him. He achieved the highest score in both the 1st & 2nd round, but then nerves got the better of him in the final and hesitation cost him 1st place and he had to settle for 3rd.

Meanwhile in the adjacent area the 12-15 year old brown & black belts were battling it out. This was a very large, difficult, mixed category with a substantial contrast in the size and physical strength between the youngest and oldest. Unfortunately, the judging appeared to favour raw power over sharp, tight kata, which made it very hard for our girls & younger boys. Luke Bradish, however, performed strong, beautiful kata to take 3rd place.

As there was some confusion over which kata category female cadets should entre, some entered the Women’s 21yrs+ and others the Male Cadets. So Hazel Jenkins entered both! She did brilliantly getting through to the last 8 in both. Competing alongside her in the Male Cadets Christopher Pimley performed very sharp kata to make the final 8. In the Men’s individual event saw Nicholas Jones scoring top marks round after round, eventually coming away with 3rd place.

We had 2 Junior kata teams, both teams were very young (aged between 9 & 13yrs in an under 16yrs category), both teams were very inexperienced, but you could see just how much hard work and dedication all six of them have put in because both teams’ performances were head and shoulders above their completion. The girls (Michaela Tranfield, Anjani Dayal & Katie Wettasinghe-Lopez) took 1st and the boys (Joshua Han, Oliver Hood & Aramis Lyons) took 2nd. Anas Jarboua, Nicholas Jones & Dawid Roj stormed through to the Men’s Team Kata final with their Jion. Unfortunately, their Nijushiho managed only 3rd against stiff completion.

Kumite is always is always very difficult for the inexperienced competitor. For the under 12yrs there is a sanbon kumite category. Our boys & girls did well but there were no medals this time. In the girls Ju Kumite, which isn’t subdivided by age and height like the boys, Michaela, Anjani & Keisha Juggan-Tull all fought well despite facing much older, bigger opponents and they should be very proud of themselves. In 14&15yrs boys’ kumite Lachlan Winder, despite sporting a rugby injury, defended himself well and conceded only one point.

In the Female Cadet kumite, Hazel Jenkins fought amazingly, winning her second round fight with a punch from the front hand and ippon. However, she just missed out in the final and took second place. Victoria Martinez, competing for the first time, put in a solid performance in the Women’s Kumite. In the Male Cadets we had 4 entrants (Matthew Randall, Masoud Sediqi, Dawid Roj & Chris Pimley). Chris thought he would give the St John’s Ambulance people something to do and dived into his opponent’s fist. After being taken to the hospital to be checked out, he is thankfully fine. Masoud had a couple of great rounds to take him into the final 8. Dawid’s 1st round fight lasted only 7 seconds as he dispatched his opponent with 2 frighteningly quick wasaris and went on to take 3rd place.

In the Men’s event Nicholas Jones showed us all a masterclass! He just teased and played with his opponents. One stand out moment was in an early round when he just waited and waited then out of nowhere came a beautiful ushiro mawashi for ippon. In the final Nicholas scored another ippon which took his opponent by surprise. As it was the final it was the first person to 3 full points and with all the close decisions going against Nick, it wasn’t enough to take the title.

In the team kumite events we did well with 3rd place in both Male & Female events. We were treated to an Anas Jarboua classic ippon as he shot out and ended his fight in an instant leaving his opponent sore faced but with no idea what just happened. A special mention must go to Dawid Roj, who at only 16yrs, fought amazingly in both Men’s & Mixed teams. He did not allow any knock (however hard) to deter him from the next fight and would have been happy to carry on a few more round if he had been allowed to.
It was a long, exhausting day which finished at about 8.30pm, but was absolutely thrilling until the end. Young Oliver Hood, despite his unfortunate hearing problem, enjoyed the day so much. After receiving a heavy counter punch in sanbon kumite at Portsmouth in November, he was rather pleases to see Aramis Lyons knock out that particular opponent in the individual kata and then again in the team event. Despite finishing his events by 3.00pm he wouldn’t leave until the last SKCE man had finished competing!

Well done everyone, especially Nicholas, who won medals in every event he entered!

SKCE Results

Kata

B&B belt 11yrs & under Kata
3rd Joshua Han

B&B belt 12-15 years Kata
3rd Luke Bradish

B&B belt Senior Male Kata
3rd Nicholas Jones

B&B belt Junior Team Kata
1st Michaela Tranfield, Anjani Dayal & Katie Wattasinghe-Lopez
2nd Joshua Han, Oliver Hood & Aramis Lyons

Male Team Kata
3rd Nicholas Jones, Anas Jarboua & Dawid Roj

Kumite

B&B belt Female Cadet Kumite
2nd Hazel Jenkins

B&B belt Male Cadet Kumite
3rd Dawid Roj

B&B belt Senior Male Kumite
2nd Nicholas Jones

Female Team Kumite
3rd Hazel Jenkins, Victoria Martinez & Janita Tan

Male Team Kumite
3rd Anas Jarboua, David Roj & Nicholas Jones

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