Date: June 1, 2019
Place/Venue: Tshwane University of Technology, Soshanguve Campus, Pretoria, South Africa
Organizers/host: WKO South Africa NEC, WKO SA/Africa Region President Mr. Isaac Mashinini and Humbulani Mphuma (host)
WKO South Africa, hosted a very successful, well-attended annual national tournament for senior weight division (18+ years competitors). The South Africa national tournament was held in conjunction with the All African women selection tournament to select one (1) woman who will represent Africa at the 12th World Open Karate Championship to be held in Japan, November 9-10. The national tournament was the final leg of the 4-year point accumulation period for male fighters to qualify to represent South Africa at the 12th World Open Karate Championship. As a result, the tournament was highly competitive as all male fighters wanted to take this opportunity to accumulate maximum points that will secure them a place in the national team. The All Africa women selection was mainly for the open weight division where the winner (1st place) was automatically selected to represent Africa in the 12th WC. The women selection division was very tough, with all fighters fighting for the 1st place, such that the finals had four rounds (i.e. three Hikiwake [draws]).
The tournament had 129 competitors (46 women and 83 men) participating in 8 different weight divisions categories (3 women divisions and 5 men divisions). Participants were from all provinces of South Africa and other full contact organisation took part in this event. The tournament had 19 officials who helped with the running of the event to ensure everything ran smooth and successful.
Shihan Mashinini also announced the team that will represent South Africa (male) and Africa region (female) in the world championship. The male competitors and reserves are Phumelele Mhlongo, Celumusa Kunene, Sifiso Hlumayo, Lucky Mathebula, Innocent Zikhali, Velile Moshoeshoe and Mncedisi Zwane, while the Africa region female competitor and reserve announced were Najmunesa Jacobs and Andronica Rakgantso. He congratulated the team and wished them well in their preparations for the world championship. We would like to extend our gratitude to all the sponsors, particularly Tshwane University of Technology, Soshanguve Campus for hosting the tournament and making it a success.
Sensei Andronica Shonhiwa (née Rakgantso)
WKO South Africa/Africa Region
For President, Shihan Isaac Mashinini.