Junior European Championships, Turkey 2013

Friday 7th February 2013 saw two Khalsa Champions represent England in the Junior European Karate Championships. Friday afternoon saw Francesca Hardcastle fight in -53kg female cadets. Fran had a very slow first fight, and narrowly won 1-0.

Fran's next fight was the toughest of all the fights as she would have either the home nation Turkey who ended up beating France the strongest kumite nation. Fran had no chance to settle down as her opponent went straight on the attack, but Fran quickly picked off her opponent and took the first point. Her opponent quickly knicked a point back and went straight on the attack again. Fran attacked and gained another point and finally picked off her opponent in the last few seconds to finish her second round 3-1.

Fran's third fight was against Azerbaijan and was dictating the fight and started piling the pressure on all the way to the last 30 seconds. In the 19th second Fran attacked and got caught with a hook kick and lost 0-3 and sending her into repocharge.

For Repocharge all Fran needed was one point, followed by one more fight and she would have medalled bronze but although she attacked she was very scrappy and lost to flags 1-4 placing her 7th in Europe!! Not bad for your first effort!!

Sophie was on saturday and although nervous we were hoping for a positive result. Unfortunately Sophie had the tallest girl and had difficulty with her reach advantage. Sophie never let down and attacked however every time she attacked she was caught and although she gained a flag she gained a flag everytime her opponent gained two flags. The final score was a frustrating 1-3 loss and we didnt manage to go into repocharge as our opponent lost in the semi finals.

Sensei Sat commented "This was an all new experience for Fran and although she performed fantastically, it was very frustrating because all the things I have explained she must not do she still did, and these cost Fran a medal!! Fran should and could have been in the finals!! For Sophie this was a dissapointing result but I will congratulate Sophie on her attitude and she never gave up!! Both girls will be Champions and both are placed 7th in Europe and in the Worlds but to go that extra round we need to change a few things and that starts straight away. Well done girls!! Both I and the club are very proud of all the hard work you have done and congratulate you on representing England!!!"

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