#Karate1Konya crowns powerhouse nations of Karate
The 2023 Karate 1-Series A Konya concluded Sunday with a celebration of the global popularity of the sport. The representatives of the host nation were the big winners of the event after taking four gold medals.
Hosts of Turkiye finished the event with four crowns. Gulbahar Gozutok opened the gold medal count for the organising country with the title of Female Kumite -61kg. The local representative defeated Victoriya Vaschchyshyn of Ukraine in the final 4-2.
Turkiye’s second crown came in Male Kumite -67kg. Enes Fatih Kurt defeated Amir Mehdizadeh of Iran by 5-2 to win his first gold medal in senior categories.
The title count for the hosts increased in Male Kumite -75kg in the All-Turkiye final of the category. Eren Akkurt defeated teammate Omer Faruk Yurur by 2-1.
In the All-Japan finals of Kata divisions, the victories went to Mirisa Ohuchi and Ryonosuke Kikuchi. In Female Kata, Ohuchi defeated teammate Nodoka Yamada by 42.0 to 41.1. It is the second Karate 1-Series A gold for the Japanese karateka.
In Male Kata, Kikuchi upset Kai Ayato, also from Japan, with scores of 42.5 to 41.1 With this victory, Kikuchi claims his second crown in Karate 1-Series A after winning the title at the 2019 Karate 1-Series A Santiago.
Karate’s global reach was also showcased in Konya as representatives of eight nations went home with gold medals. Gabriella Izaguirre of El Salvador surprised favourites and took the crown in Female Kumite -50kg following a 4-2 triumph over Olha Vasylenko of Ukraine.
Bella Samasheva won gold for Kazakhstan in Female Kumite -55kg after beating Nejra Sipovic of Bosnia and Herzegovina 3-1.
The second gold for Kazakhstan was claimed by Laura Alikul in Female Kumite -68kg. The Kazakh athlete edged Pamela Bodei of Italy 1-0.
Powerhouse nation of Iran also celebrated titles in Konya. In the All-Iran final of Female Kumite +68kg, the triumph went to Shima Alesaadi who beat teammate Hananeh Salehi Laleh Marzi by 5-1.
Alireza Akbari added one more gold for Iran as he prevailed in Male Kumite -84kg. The Iranian representative upset Chun-Wei Wu of Chinese-Taipei 6-4.
In Male Kumite -60kg, Carmine Luciano of Italy upset local hopeful Omer Faruk Ates and prevented one more gold for Turkiye. The Italian karateka won the final 2-0.
The title of Saudi Arabia’s Sanad Sufyani in Male Kumite +84kg over Anes Bostandizc of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the crowns claimed by Turkiye and Kuwait in Female and Male Team Kata respectively completed the list of gold medallists in Konya.
The Karate 1-Series A travels now to Richmond-Vancouver (Canada) where the third event of the season will be held from April 14 to 16.