The 42nd Portsmouth Open Karate Tournament

Early on this cold Saturday morning, nearly 40 competitors and their families made their way down to Portsmouth to give their very best for themselves and SKCE.  For some there were nerves, as it was their first competition outside SKCE, for others it was enjoying that familiar buzz of these events. We also had the friendly faces of Senseis Eric and Mark who came to judge & referee for the day.

As always at Portsmouth, the day started with Team Kata.  We had four teams, one adult and three junior, enter.  In the adult section a small error in walking on to the mat was enough to take them out of a medal position.  The juniors all put in polished performances which saw two teams into the final and the third just missing out.  The girls’ team of Michaela Tranfield, Anjani Dayal & Katie Wettasinghe-Lopez and the boys’ team of Joshua Han, Oliver Hood and Lachlan Winder, both got up again to perform Jion and gained well deserved 2nd and 4th places respectively.

Then moving onto the individual kata events. In the under 10 years category little Jade Kitt kept getting up to perform again and again as she confidently progressed through the rounds to achieve her 4th place. The junior kata category (10-15 year old boys & girls) is always massive and fiercely contested.  SKCE alone had 14 entries!  Everyone produced strong, confident kata and as the knock out rounds went on we had two SKCE competitors remaining and through to the final. Michaela Tranfield performed Jion to take 3rd and Daniel O’Driscoll, also Jion, to take 4th.  In the men’s individual kata Anas Jarboua shined and worked his way through to the final, performing Nijushiho to secure 3rd place.

The Portsmouth organisers make this a very child friendly competition, with junior competitors able to participate in an additional mixed sanbon kumite event.  So our boys and girls had to cast their minds back to their orange belt grading.  Again they all performed amazingly.  In the under 5ft tall category the normally angelic Michaela Tranfield and Katie Wettasingh-Lopez, could only be described as terrifying (no boy will get the better of either of them!) as they came away with 2nd & 3rd places respectively.  In the 5ft and over category, Hannah Mercer showed beautiful form and timing to earn her 3rd place.

In the standard kumite, we saw some fantastic performances. The smaller girls’ category saw some beautiful fighting from Keisha Juggan-Tull.  She has such precise timing and so narrowly missed out in taking the top spot in the final.  In the taller girls’ section, all three SKCE girls overpowered the competition and won medals, with some emotional bouts as they had to fight each other.  The result: Hannah Mercer 1st, Josephine Ijegbai 2nd and Yasmine Tetsola 3rd.  For the under 5ft boys’, both our competitors won medals.  Little Joshua Han taught everyone not to underestimate your opponent. He may be a smaller than the other competitors, but he is a pit-bull who never gives up and achieved 3rd place.  Oliver Hood was the one to watch from his very first fight as it was over within 2 seconds with a lovely Ippon that left his opponent stunned. He demonstrated some clean, precise fighting and in so doing retained his title from last year.

The male youth (16&17 yrs) kumite was again dominated by SKCE with Dawid Roj (1st) and Matthew Randall (3rd) switching positions from last year.  In addition Josh Stewart also came in 3rd, a very impressive achievement for someone who is only a green belt!  In the women’s up to 1st kyu category, first time competitor and busy mum, Sian Hood decided that Oliver was not going to be the only one to bring back medals to the Hood household.  She gave the eventual winner a very tough time as she earned 3rd place.  Nicholas Jones was also in great form in the men’s kumite, as he got through to the last four with ease and eventually taking 3rd.

In the Team Kumite events we entered 3 teams, 2 men’s and one women’s.  The men’s B team comprising of Warren Telsola, Matthew Randall and Masoud Sediqi, aged between 17 and 20 years, were up against far more experienced fighters and performed brilliantly, gaining valuable experience.  There was plenty of drama with the men’s A team (Anas Jarboua, Nicholas Jones & Dawid Roj).  In their first round, they were down and it was down to Anas needing an Ippon just to draw and force a forth deciding fight.  He delivered both the Ippon and the decider.  In the next round a sweep by Dawid was deemed too aggressive and resulted in disqualification.  Again an ippon was needed from Anas to force the decider, but he won his fight by 2 wasari and the team were knocked out.  The women’s team (Nicole Lee, Sian Hood & Janita Tan) managed 3rd place.

The star performers for SKCE were no doubt the children.  With special mentions going to Hannah Mercer (1st Taller Girls’ Kumite, 3rd over 5ft Sanbon Kumite), Oliver Hood (1st <5ft Boys’ Kumite, 4th Junior Team Kata), Michaela Tranfield (2nd <5ft Sanbon Kumite, 2nd Junior Team Kata, 3rd Junior Individual Kata), Katie Wettasinghe-Lopez (2nd Junior Team Kata, 3rd <5ft Sanbon Kumite) and Joshua Han (3rd <5ft Boys’ Kumite, 4th Junior Team Kata).

However, everyone who took part should be applauded.  It is not always easy performing in public and everyone who competed at Portsmouth gained valuable experience even if they did not do as well as they had hoped.  We have a wonderful team, amazing supporters/parents who give up so much of their time and we have come away with a fantastic result.  Sensei Graham would have loved to have been on the mat behind every SKCE competitor and apologizes that he could not be everywhere at once.  We had a great team spirit, always supporting each other.  I think SKCE can be very proud of its team today.

By Janita Tan



SKCE Results



Under 10yrs – 4th Jade Kitt

Junior Individual Brown & Black belt – 3rd Michaela Tranfield, 4th Daniel O’Driscoll

Men’s Individual Black belt – 3rd Anas Jarboua

Junior Team Kata – 2nd SKCE Girls (Michaela Tranfield, Anjani Dayal, Katie Wettasinghe-Lopez), 4th SKCE Boys (Joshua Han, Oliver Hood, Lachlan Winder)



Junior Sanbon Kumite <5ft – 2nd Michaela Tranfield, 3rd Katie Wettasinghe-Lopez

Junior Sanbon Kumite 5ft & over – 3rd Hannah Mercer

Junior Boys’ Individual <5ft – 1st Oliver Hood, 3rd Joshua Han

Junior Smaller Girls’ Individual – 2nd Keisha Juggan-Tull

Junior Taller Girls’ Individual – 1st Hannah Mercer, 2nd Josephine Ijegbai, 3rd Yasmine Telsola

Youth Male Individual – 1st Dawid Roj, 3rd Matthew Randall, 3rd Josh Stewart

Women’s Individual 7th – 1st Kyu – 3rd Sian Hood

Men’s Individual Black belt – 3rd Nicholas Jones

Women’s Team Kumite – 3rd SKCE (Nicole Lee, Sian Hood, Janita Tan)




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