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Antonio Diaz makes history in Lima


The legend of Antonio Diaz lives on. The Karate Star from Venezuela made history in Lima (Peru) as the two-time World champion was crowned as the winner of the Male Kata competition of the 2019 Pan American Games. It is one more award for the most decorated Karate athlete of all times. Sakura Kokumai of the USA and the Kata teams of Peru and the Dominican Republic were the big winners of the opening day of the Karate competition at the Pan American Games. 

In front of a full sports hall, the best karatekas of the Americas started showing their abilities in Lima as the Karate competition of the Pan American Games begun at the Villa El Salvador Sport Centre. Antonio Diaz of Venezuela was the big hero of the opening day of Karate action since the 39-year-old athlete achieved a memorable success in Lima. 

The legendary karateka from Venezuela had arrived in Lima as the current title-holder since Diaz won the crown of the Pan American Games in 2003, the last time that Kata was included in the sports programme of the multi-sport event. No less than 16 years later, Antonio Diaz demonstrated that his legend lives on and the fan favourite won the title in a spectacular showdown of Kata abilities. 

The Venezuelan hero defeated Ariel Torres in the final of Male Kata. Diaz excelled with his “Suparinpei” kata and got a score of 25.82 points for 25.46 of Torres. With this result, Diaz avenged the upset he suffered at the last continental championships when Torres shocked the Venezuelan star in the final. 


In Female Kata, the result of the continental championships was extended to the Pan American Games since the same two finalists met at the title-deciding bout and the crown was taken by the same competitor. 

Sakura Kokumai added the Pan American Games title to her continental crown after defeating Maria Dimitrova of the Dominican Republic in the final. The 27 year-old karateka from Hawaii performed “Chibana Kushanku” kata to claim the title of the Female Kata category. 

The first day of competition finished with the team kata competition. The host nation took their first gold in Karate since the Male Team Kata from the organising nation beat Mexico in the final. The title in Female Team Kata was for the Dominican Republic. The Caribbean nation defeated Mexico in the final. 

The competition continues on Saturday with the second day of action from Lima. CLICK HERE to access all the info of the Pan American Games. 


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