Karate kids fight for gold

2019-09-10 06:00
Raeesah Isaacs from Lentegeur.

Raeesah Isaacs from Lentegeur.

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Five karate learners from Trevor’s Kyokushin School of Karate in Westridge, Mitchell’s Plain, made history when they emerged as the karate All Africa Champions. They won their championship medals and trophies at the first Kyokushin Ryu All Africa Full Contact Tournament in Mauritius on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 August.

Kaylin Stubbs (elite women category), Clayton Gordon (elite men under 80kg), Raeesah Isaacs, (girls u.15), Darren Abrahams (boys u.15) and Aden Bulose (second place) competed at the competition.

Stubbs (21) from Rocklands emerged as the African Continent Kyokushin Ryu Elite Women’s Champion.

Stubbs started karate when she was seven and after many championship achievements in the Western Cape, she has been crowned the African Champion.

Her sensei, Trevor Rustin said she is a role model for young women and girls in South Africa and Mitchell’s Plain.

Stubbs said she is not just doing this for herself. “I’m doing this for all the girls in Mitchell’s Plain who feel unsafe.” When I was growing up I could see the negativity in the media about Mitchell’s Plain. She said her parents enrolled her into karate to defend and protect herself. “Karate is all that I know.” She said she trained very hard for this and it’s all thanks to her sensei.

“I have participated in various tournaments but not internationally.” She said the preparation was more intense than local competitions.

“When we walked into the hall, everyone looked at us because we were the foreigners,” she added.

Stubbs said she competed at this competition in 2017 but never made the podium place so she felt that she had something to prove.

“I had to give 110% because I had something to prove. I trained every day. I went to the gym, did karate thrice a week and ran 3 to 4km. We also prepared mentally.”

“My parents are extremely proud of me and have always supported me throughout this journey. They also saw how tired I was when I came home from work and had to go to training after,” she said.

For now, Stubbs said she hopes to compete in a competition in Singapore next year, and will begin to prepare for that competition will start soon.

She will also be tested for her second black belt at the end of the year.

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