SUVA Goju Ryu once again triumphed in the National Karate Championships yesterday at Yat Sen Secondary School hall in Suva.
The club accumulated a total of 12 gold medals, six silver medals and eight bronze medals to stamp their overall dominance in the Sun Insurance-sponsored competition. The Capital City club won eight gold medals in kumite, four silvers and three bronze medals in the kumite discipline and four gold, two silvers and five bronze in the kata discipline.
Overall, Karate Nadi was second with nine gold, eight silver and three bronze medals. Goju Ryu Lautoka was third with six gold, five silver and three bronze medals. New club YMCA was fourth with two gold, eight silver and four bronze while Lautoka Shotokan was fifth with two gold, three silver and two bronze medals.
A total of 61 competitors featured in the competition and Karate Fiji general secretary Angela Birch said the competition level had increased compared with the past years.
"We had Sensei Anthony Hails with us for the past few days and his trip was supported by the Fiji National Sports Commission," Birch said. We have seen a real difference in the games and we have seen the game lift among the athletes who have been training with him."
She said two more major international events remained for the year before they fully started concentrating on the Pacific Games to be held in Papua New Guinea next year.
"So the big focus now is on the Oceania Karate Championship which would be held from September 11 to 13 at the Vodafone Arena in Suva and then the World Championships later in the year. All these competitions are leading up to the Pacific Games next year."
Karate Fiji president Makarita Lenoa thanked the athletes, technical officials, volunteers and Sun Insurance for making the event successful.