Sunday 1st March saw the TKF Squad attend the EKKA Open Competition in Ipswich with a great medal haul of 15 medals in total which is a great result for TKFs first competition of the year.

The squad assembled at the Northgate Sports Centre in Ipswich where the preparations had already started with the squad warming up and preparing for the first events. Some of the squad consisted of first-time squad members and other experienced squad members who had all entered into their respective categories.

The first events were announced, which was the senior kata events. This meant our senior competitors, Katie Bonfield, Sammie Howlett, Doug Middleton and Matthew Yardy would be the first to step onto the mats. After great technical performance from Katie, she managed to place in the final which meant Katie and Sammie would be going head to head. Both performing the kata Bassai Dai, the judges made their decision, with the winning flags going to Sammie with a score of 2-1. Doug Middleton was the next competitor who managed to earn a place in the final of the Senior Male Brown Belt Category. He then went on to perform a brilliant Nijushiho which earned him the gold medal. TKF instructor Matthew Yardy then stepped up to perform an unofficial Shotokan kata but a WKF Competition approved kata, Sansai. Matthew was able to perform well and managed to add the third gold medal to the tally.

The junior kata categories followed with some tough draws for our young squad. Oliver Curtis was one of the first junior squad members to perform which was in the 7th Kyu to 4th Kyu category. His solid performance of Heian Sandan in the semi-final wasn’t enough to help him progress to the final but was enough to earn himself the bronze medal. The 3rd Kyu-1st Kyu event saw several of TKFs Squad in the same event with Katie Middleton, Dylan Harvey and Olly Howell-Hoye all competing in the same category. All three managed to progress through to the semi finals with all of them performing Empi brilliantly. Olly managed to pull off a strong Bassai Dai in order to cement his place in the final. Katie and Dylan found themselves competing against each other and performing the same kata, Kanku Sho. Dylan was victorious and progressed to the final whilst Katie took the well-earned bronze medal. In an all TKF final, Dylan performed Bassai Dai and Olly performed a riskier Gankaku, which made this final a great spectacle. Dylan was victorious out of the two, but both showed great respect for one another once the result had been given. Last up in the junior section was the Dan Grades. James Leveridge was unfortunate to miss out on the semi final place after coming against an opponent who managed to reach the final. Martyna Marjeska and Cody Gedge competed against each other, both performing Gankaku, in the other semi final and it was Martyna who managed to win progressing to the final and narrowly missing out on the gold medal and settled for silver after a confident Empi performance with Cody settling for bronze.

Once the kata events had finished, the kumite events followed and straight away, youngster Brody Farrow was among the first of the squad members to fight off. Going against a young, but experienced fighter, Brody was unfortunate to miss out on a semi final place by one point after a solid fight. The other juniors followed with Cody and TJ Greene fighting off in the semi final of the Dan Grade Junior Kumite. Both were unlucky not to score any points against one another, but with the help of the judge’s decision (in the case of a draw), TJ progressed to the final. TJ was very unlucky with a couple of good solid kicks not able to score, he managed to earn a well-earned silver medal while Cody took his second bronze of the day. Just after, TJ and Cody teamed up to fight in the Pairs Team Kumite event. In the final, TJ unfortunately lost his fight, but Cody managed to win his bout with a chance of snatching the gold medal. They just missed out on the gold as the team’s total points were added up and the opponents had earned more points in total. Martyna was so unlucky to miss out on the gold medal in her kumite event. After missing out to the winner in the round robin event, she managed to win her second fight against an experienced opponent to take the silver medal. To finish off the day, TKF Instructor Katie was aiming to add to her medal tally of the day through the Female Senior Kumite event. In a close heated final, Katie managed to control the fight well showing good patience with her attacks and keep her opponent at bay whilst scoring some good jabs to the head. Taking a few hits herself, she came away with a well-earned gold medal in the kumite event.

Overall a great performance from all the competitors which saw a total medal haul of 5 gold medals, 6 silver medals and 4 bronze medals. You can see the full results below;

Dylan Harvey (3rd-1st Kyu Kata)
Sammie Howlett (Senior Female Kata)
Douglas Middleton (Male Senior Kata 3rd-1st Kyu)
Matthew Yardy (Male Senior Dan Grade Kata)
Katie Bonfield (Senior Female Kumite)

Olly Howell Hoye (3rd-1st Kyu Kata)
Martyna Majeska (Dan Grade Junior Kata)
Martyna Majeska (Junior Female Kumite)
Cody Gedge and TJ Greene (Pairs Kumite)
TJ Greene (Junior Male Kumite)
Katie Bonfield (Senior Female Kata)

Oliver Curtis (7th Kyu-4th Kyu Kata)
Katie Middleton (3rd-1st Kyu Kata)
Cody Gedge (Dan Grade Junior Kata)
Cody Gedge (Junior Male Kumite)