Dundalk Karate enjoyed a triumphant day at the annual INSK Open Karate competition which was held in Tallaght, Dublin last weekend.
Each member of the club came home with a medal after beating off stiff competition in each of their categories.
First to the tatami mats was Katie McNamara and Franek Chmielecka for their Kumite (fighting) categories. Both members were up against a huge number of contestants and both managed to come away with medals.
Katie fought her way through numerous rounds to receive a gold medal for all her hard work and she was was quickly followed by Franek who narrowly missed out in the final rounds of his section but surprised everyone with a bronze medal, much to the delight of the spectators.
With the youngest members of the squad having completed their first category, next up was Christopher Joyce who was up against numerous seasoned competitors in his Kata (form) category.
With members, family and friends from Dundalk Karate watching each kata that he performed, he sailed through to the final and was awarded silver.
Following in hot pursuit was Katie and Franek in their Kata categories. Again they were both up against huge opposition. Franek was unfortunate and narrowly missed out on a bronze in his kata category but Katie shone through against yet more seasoned competitors to win a bronze medal of her own.
Next up was Liam Hoey, and to say that the atmosphere could be cut by a knife, is an understatement.
Liam’s category consisted of a number of competitors who had numerous titles under their belts from previous competitions and everyone was holding their breath at the strength of this huge section.
Every time that Liam stepped out onto the tatami mats and performed his Kata and was awarded the round, members, family and friends of Dundalk Karate jumped for joy and when it came to the semi-final and final, everyone who was in attendance couldn’t believe that Liam was walking onto the tatami mats like a seasoned pro. To say that the roof was lifted with applause when the judges and referees awarded Liam a Gold is putting it mildly.
This was then followed by a short lunch break and only then was the enormity of the days events hitting home to all club members. The mood was fantastic as everyone prepared to support Liam in his final category, Kumite.
Yet again, Liam’s category consisted of seasoned competitors, including numerous competitors he had faced before but, once Liam took to the tatami mats he held his own.
Not only did he show his fellow competitors what he was made of, but he never showed how truly nervous he was. Everyone from Dundalk Karate stood at the sidelines to support Liam and when he was awarded a bronze Medal for all his hard work, everyone was thrilled and overjoyed at what not only Liam had achieved but at how hugely successful the whole day had been.
“Each member of Dundalk Karate has been putting in a lot of hard work, and to be able to come to a national competition and have all members of the squad be successful in all their categories is reward enough,” said Head of Dundalk Karate, Sensei Mary Marcus.
“When members attend competitions, they can get a little nervous and even excited, and for any student to be able to walk out in front of total strangers and perform in either a Kata or Kumite category and come home with medals, is just the icing on the cake for me.”
If you would like any further information on Dundalk Karate why not contact Mary Marcus on 086 353 1625 or firstname.lastname@example.org