The European Shotokan Challenge Cup in Glasgow was an enormous success for the KWF South Africa team who did their country proud with a total of more than 20 international medals and trophies.
The senior kumite team of Pieter Pretorius, Gerrit van Niekerk and Arno van Tonder beat the Netherlands in the final in a closely fought 'battle' to clinch the gold medal. The same 3-man team took 3rd place in team kata in a section won by the younger South African team of Josh Feldman, Ryan Fransman and Nicholas Georgiadis.
In the individual senior sections, Pieter Pretorius took the silver medal in kata, losing out to Robin Hujer of the Netherlands and the silver medal in kumite, losing to Tom Kompier in the final. For this all round stalwart performance, he received the trophy for the "Best overall Senior". South Africa's presence in this kumite division was very blatant with Arno van Tonder also capturing the bronze medal.
The winner of the "Outstanding Karateka of the Tournament" trophy was Ryan Fransman. Ryan gained this accolade by taking the gold medal in both the Under 18 and Under 21 Individual Kata sections and a silver medal for Under 18 kumite. Ryan then featured in three unison team kata events, together with Nicholas Georgiadis and Josh Feldman to take gold in the senior division, as mentioned above, and twice with Nicholas and Rory Moses for the team to take gold in both the Under 21 and Under 16 team kata events.
Close on Ryan's heels in the medal stakes was 10-year-old Tatum Kroon, who took three individual gold medals in her belt level sections, two for Under 12 Kata and Under 14 Kata, and one for Under 12 Kumite. Tatum, Austen Parfitt and Julian Lap took the title in Under 12 team kata and the bronze for Under 12 team kumite.
In the individual Under 12 Kata section, Julian Lap beat team mate Austen Parfitt in the final, giving South Africa both the gold and silver medals.
Austen then added to this tally by taking bronze in the Under 14 kata section. Ashana Sewsunker took a bronze for kata and silver for kumite in her belt division in the Under 14 age group.
Malcolm Dorfman Sensei instructed the opening class of the International Seminar on the Friday morning, with Yahara Sensei taking the classes in the afternoon, evening and following morning. Malcolm Dorfman sensei was kept busy throughout the duration of the championship after being requested to act as chief referee by the host, Robert Sidoli Sensei, Chief Instructor of KWF G.B.
A very happy KWF S.A. team, overladen with medals and trophies, arrived back in South Africa, motivated to continue their winning ways at next year's KWF World Championship in Japan.