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Quest to lead Karate Olympic standings intensifies

2019-11-06

Karate’s Olympic standings have been updated, and first-class karatekas continue on top of the eight Olympic categories. The differences among the top four qualifying positions are being reduced as the quest to earn the tickets to Tokyo 2020 intensifies. 

The first four athletes in the standings of each one of the Olympic categories, together with one karateka from the host country will qualify for the Karate competition of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. After the update of the standings, the Olympic categories are headed by Ryo Kiyuna (JPN), Darkhan Assadilov (KAZ), Bahman Asgari Ghoncheh (IRI), Ugur Aktas (TUR), Sandra Sanchez (ESP), Serap Ozcelik (TUR), Xiaoyan Yin (CHN), and Irina Zaretska (AZE). 

RYO KIYUNA LEADS MALE KATA

The Olympic quest in Male Kata is so thrilling that up to the seventh-ranked karateka are thus far in qualifying positions. Ryo Kiyuna (JPN) and Damian Quintero (ESP) are clearly on the lead with Ali Sofuoglu (TUR) taking the third place. Due to the presence of Japanese athletes in top positions, the rest of the qualifying places go to Antonio Diaz (VEN) and Mattia Busato (ITA) who are ranked sixth and seventh. Ilja Smorguner (GER) is next in line in 10th place. 

CHANGES IN MALE KUMITE -67KG

Less than 700 points separate the top three positions in Male Kumite -67kg. Darkhan Assadilov (KAZ) remains in the first place while World champions Angelo Crescenzo (ITA) and Steven Dacosta (FRA) take the second and third positions respectively. The last of the qualifying posts go to Ali Elsawy (EGY) who makes it to the group of selected karateka in this category after this month’s update. The first-ranked Japanese is Naoto Sago in seventh place. 

SMALL DIFFERENCES IN MALE KUMITE -75KG

Iran’s Bahman Asgari Ghoncheh is leading the contested category of Male Kumite -75kg with 465 points difference over Ken Nishimura who is taking the Japanese quota in the category. Rafael Aghayev (AZE), Luigi Busa (ITA) and Stanislav Horuna (UKR) take the rest of the qualifying spots. USA’s Thomas Scott remain in sixth place at only 90 points of the coveted positions. 

STARS ON TOP IN MALE KUMITE +75KG

Leading names maintain their status in Male Kumite +75kg. Grand Winner Ugur Aktas of Turkey is the leader of the standings with 765 points more than Iran’s Sajad Ganjzadeh. The rest of the names in qualifying positions are Jonathan Horne (GER), Ivan Kvesic (CRO) and Ryutaro Araga (JPN) with Gogita Arkania (GEO) waiting his chances in sixth place and at 1,057.5 points of the qualifying places. 

SANDRA SANCHEZ AND KIYOU SHIMIZU TAKE CLEAR LEAD IN FEMALE KATA 

After dominating all the major events of the season so far, Sandra Sanchez (ESP) and Kiyou Shimizu (JPN) have acquired a considerable lead in Female Kata. The category is topped by the World champion from Spain, with 960 points more than Shimizu. Viviana Bottaro (ITA) is third at 2,122.5 points of the two-time world champion from Japan while Mo Sheung Grace Lau (HKG) and Sakura Kokumai (USA) complete the qualifying positions. The next in line is Dilara Eltemur (TUR) at 810‬ points of the last qualifying position. 

NEW NAMES IN FEMALE KUMITE -55KG

Serap Ozcelik (TUR) continues as a strong leader of Female Kumite -55kg. The defending Grand Winner has a difference of 570 points over second-placed Anzhelika Terliuga (UKR). Tzu-Yun Wen (TPE) and Miho Miyahara (JPN) take third and fourth places respectively, while Sara Bahmanyar (IR) appears among the selected karateka for the first time following the new update. Bettina Plank (AUT) awaits her chances at 270 points of the fifth place. 

XIAOYAN YIN LEADS FEMALE KUMITE -61KG

The clash for the leadership in Female Kumite -61kg is very intense with the two top competitors at only 645‬ points. Xiaoyan Yin (CHN) is the leader followed by Giana Lotfy (EGY). World champion Jovana Prekovic (SRB) and Merve Coban (TUR) complete the list of athletes in qualifying positions. Rozita Alipourkeshka of Iran takes the fifth place. The host country quota goes for the moment to Mayumi Someya. 

MERGING OF CATEGORIES AFFECTS FEMALE KUMITE +61KG 

In Female Kumite +61kg, the qualifying positions go until the seventh place due to the merging of categories. Irina Zaretska (AZE) is the leader followed by Ayumi Uekusa who is the first-placed Japanese representative. Elena Quirici (SUI), Eleni Chatziliadou (GRE) and seventh-placed Hamideh Abbasali (IRI) complete the list of momentarily qualified athletes. France’s Alizee Agier, fourth, and Silvia Semeraro (ITA), sixth, both coming from Female Kumite -68kg remain unqualified for the merging of categories. 

The next and final update of the year will be done at the beggining of December. 

CLICK HERE to go to the full Olympic Standings.  

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