The Association for the Advancement of Karatedo (AAK)-Team Philippines bagged the overall championship title in the 36th Karatedo Gojukai Annual Championship by winning nine gold, six silver and nine bronze medals at the Home Team NS Balestier Multi-Purpose Hall in Singapore.
AAK-Team Philippines standouts Kiara Gorrospe of Miriam College (kata and kumite), Jairus Sarmiento of Lourdes School of Mandaluyong (kata and kumite) and Lucas Lagunzad of University of the Philippines (kata and kumite) spearheaded the country’s campaign as they copped two gold medals each in their respective divisions.
Also earning gold medals were Ryan Anthony Lim of De La Salle Zobel School (kata), Neo Gatlabayan of British School Manila (kata) and Joan Denise Lumbao of Poveda College (kumite) in the tournament participated by more than 200 karatekas in the region.
“The AAK’S purpose of sending our neophyte athletes in this championship was to let them gain experience but instead they dominated the championship. We are also making the students aware and prepare them for the Tokyo Olympics 2020 wherein Karate will be included for the first time as a regular sport,” said delegation head Richard Anthony Lim.
Accounting for the silver medals were Paulo Gorospe of Xavier School (kata and kumite), Kyla Nabaza of St. Paul College Pasig (kata), Joan Lumbao (kata), Faye Nabaza of St. Paul College Pasig (kumite) and Oliver Mañalac of Fitness First (kumite).
The bronzes were from Sebastian Mañalac of St. Mary’s College (kata and kumite), Victoria Arnedo ng Poveda College (kata), Faye Nabaza (kata), Kyla Nabaza (kumite), Gatlabayan (kumite), Lim (kumite) and the Team Kumite of Kiara Gorrospe and Kyla Nabaza.
“This was a good avenue for these young Filipino Karatekas to prepare themselves, and to develop skills of International caliber. AAK Team Philippines came out as the overall champion even with just 15 delegates,” added team coach Norman Sonny Montalvo.
The AAK-Team Philippines recently won three gold, four silver and eight bronze medals in the 1st International Indonesian Karatedo Championship held in Jakarta, Indonesia with Xavier School Greenhills standout Adam Ortiz Bondoc (boys’ cadet kumite +70kg for ages 14-15), Colegio de San Agustin-Makati bets Nicole Erika Dantes (girls’ juniors 16-17 years old Kumite) and Krisanta Renzel Asistido (girls’ children 12-13 years old Kata) delivering the gold medals.