Sunday,23 September, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1312, (22-28 September 2016)
Sunday,23 September, 2018
Issue 1312, (22-28 September 2016)

Ahram Weekly

The sun in Spain

Egyptian karatekas took second place in the Mediterranean Karate Federations Union Championship held in Toledo, reports Abeer Anwar

Randa Rousfelt
Randa Rousfelt
Al-Ahram Weekly

The Mediterranean Karate Federations Union Championship   showcased the thrilling and arduous quest to succeed, evidenced by the Egyptian national team collecting 12 medals: three gold, five silver and four bronze to end up in second place. Spain, the host, finished on top of the final table with a tally of 14 medals. The young Pharaohs finished ahead of Italy, Turkey and France which have a number of world champions. But in this championship it was the time for new faces to shine more than those with experience and more famous names.

While some of the favourites confirmed their status with impressive victories in Toledo, the event will go down in history for the surprising setbacks suffered by top karatekas.

Egypt’s three gold medals came from star Giana Lotfi who confirmed her favourite status by winning the female kumite -61kg category after beating teammate Hoda Moshraf in an all-Egypt final. Lotfi, the world champion, earned her third gold medal in three appearances this season and showcased her domination in the category.

Following in her footsteps was teammate in the female kumite -55kg, rising star Randa Rousfelt who became one of the attention-grabbers of the event after her startling triumph in the category. The Egyptian athlete shocked with her victory over world and European champion Sara Cardin of Italy in the first bout of the competition. The Italian karate star recovered from the defeat to win bronze while Rousfelt beat Cristina Ferrer in the final to complete a remarkable participation.

The third gold medal was courtesy of the Egyptian men’s team kumite represented by Osama Abdel-Aziz, Ahmed Sayed, Omar Abdel-Moneim  and Magdi Mamdouh.

Silver medals came thanks to Hoda Nabil in the under 61kg, Nada Al-Sayed in the -68kg, Sohaila Ahmed in the +68kg, Ahmed Gamal in the -84kg and Osama Abdel-Aziz in the +84kg.

Radwa Sayed in 50kg, Aisha Abdel-Rahim, +68kg, and the women’s team kata which consisted of Aya Hesham, Randa Atef and Shaimaa Roshdi collected bronze medals.

“It is a great achievement that proves we are moving in the right direction especially before the world championship next month in Austria,” Ayman Abdel-Hamid, Egypt’s Karate Federation president, said. “This is also a good opportunity for all karate players since it gives them hope to continue working hard to be able to represent Egypt in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.”

Mustafa Fekri, head of the medial committee at the Egyptian federation, added, “These medals prove to the world that Egypt is a pioneer in karate and can host the world juniors and under-21 championship next year.”

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