ON Saturday May 4th Barry Kyokushin hosted the 3rd IKO Welsh Championships.

Barry Kyokushin put 29 members of their club into this tournament and came away with 38 trophies.

The day started with Synchronised Kata (form) with 2 teams in from Barry against 3 others teams from other area’s of the UK.

Barry team 1 comprising of Ben Bolanos 2nd Kyu(15), Justine Bolanos 2nd Kyu (13) and Leanne Lirio 2nd Kyu (14) performed a solid and perfectly synchronised Gekisai Dai kata and took 1st Place. Barry team 2 comprising of Kelly Shi 3rd Kyu (14) Cian Wilmot 3rd Kyu (13) and James Shi 3rd Kyu (13) performed Pinan Go and were just 0.4 of a point below their fellow club members and settled for 2nd Place.

Next up, individual Kata, the early rounds were taken up by mostly students who had never competed before so the nerves were high.

But the Barry club took all 3 top spots, Tudor Constantine 9th Kyu (9) took 3rd Place, Kayden Lewis 9th Kyu (9) took 2nd Place and Gabriella Sedgmond 9th Kyu (9) took 1st Place.

In Kata 2, Angie perks 8th Kyu (9) beat off 6 other contenders to take 1st Place. While in Kata 3, Barry boys were pipped to the top spot by their English competitor but Sebastian Barczewski 3rd Kyu (11) settles for a 3rd place spot while Jamie Jones 7th Kyu (10) took 2nd place.

Jamie missed out on top spot by 0.1.

Kata 4, our Barry girls dominated their other Welsh and English opponents by taking all 3 top spots with Justine Bolanos in 1st Place , Kelly Shi in 2nd place and Leanne Lirio in 3rd place.

Kata 5 saw 2 of the Barry boys place. Barry competitor Ben Bolanos took 1st, while team mate Cian Wilmot took 2nd.

Showing similar results in Adult Kata, Kata 6 where Senior student Claire Norman, competing for the 3rd time in this event took 1st Place while team mate Yousef Hasan took an impressive 2nd.

Then came Higher grade Kata where club assistant instructor Senpai Rhian Evans 1st Dan (23) took to the mat competing for her 10th Consecutive national title against her English competitors, up first saw Reza Azhdari-Nia from Durum perform scoring a solid 21.2 then followed by Barry’s Senpai Rhian who scored a very impressive 21.7 then followed by Senpai Lindsay Young who came in at 21.6.

A very close score and all were brought back up for round 2 where they would then perform again.

Reza up scoring a 21.3 with Senpai Lindsay scoring another 21.6, but Senpai Rhian absolutely smashing it by scoring 21.9 and taking her 10th National Kata titles in 7 year of training.

Moving onto our Kumite (Fighting) our battling brothers Lloyd and Jamie Jones (10) found themselves in a large category of other competitors from England and Wales, while they breezed through the preliminary rounds the boys found themselves against each other in the final. The boys didn’t hold anything back but Lloyd came out victorious and took 1st place from his twin brother Jamie settled for 2nd Place.

In Junior Kumite 4, the Barry Girls, Justine Bolanos and Kelly Shi also battled through the preliminary rounds and came against each other in the final, the girls spent many hours preparation training sparring each other so knew each others habits. Justine just beat Kelly to 1st Place having Kelly settling for a very respectable 2nd place.

Junior Kumite 5 say team mates Ben and Cian against fighters from England, Cian unfortunately lost in the early rounds but team mate Ben motored through and faced off against his team mates opponent and beat him to take another 1st Place for Ben, his 3rd 1st place of the tournament so far.

Last up for the semi contact Kumite was Jack Garrett 4th Kyu (17).

Jack had some very tough rounds early on but clinched wins and got through to the final.

His final was against a fighter of high calibre but one who is new to the Kyokushin circuit so not familiar to the rules. His opponent, getting clearly frustrated with the round performed several illegal techniques resulting in disqualification giving way to jack to take 1st place.

They then moved onto the Cadet Knockdown. First up a category which Barry girls Angie Perks, Katie Cookson and Lily Evans entered along with other Welsh competitors.

The Barry girls battled through the preliminary rounds and found themselves in the finals where a round robin was created, Angie came through victorious with a 1st place win, while Lily Evans (competing for the first time) took a very respectable 2nd place and Katie Cookson took 3rd.

In the 2nd category for the day, a category dominated by Barry students (mostly fighting in their first every tournament) found themselves against opponents from other clubs in Wales and England, 2 of our Barry team were knocked out in the early rounds, Simba Lewis and Tudor Constantine. But both fought with great spirit and determination.

However, their team mates Kayden Lewis, Ryan Marshall and Harri Evans battled on and although came against each other in the final rounds fought hard and Kaden won his 3rd place fight off for 3rd Place while Ryan Marshall came up against Harri Evans. Both fought well, but Harri came out victorious and took 1st and Ryan 2nd.

3rd Category saw the Battling brothers Lloyd and Jamie Jones along with team mate Sebastian Barczewski. First Up Sebastian against another welsh fighter. The fight was going well until an illegal kick saw Sebastian get a nasty cut above his eye and his opponent becoming disqualified, unfortunately Sebastian couldn’t continue so missed out on the further rounds. This was also the round we saw Jamie Jones knocked out in the early rounds, Jamie and Lloyd were fighting in this category for the first time. However, Lloyd went on and managed to secure a very respectable 2nd place losing out to a fighter with a greater technical ability.

4th Category saw only 1 of our Barry team in, Eve Conway 8th Kyu (12) also fighting for the very first time. Eve trained very hard for this tournament and found herself up against 3 other English fighters and welsh fighters from other clubs, all who had much more experience than Eve.

Stepping up to her first round, clearly nervous, Eve carefully sussed out her opponent and with a flurry of carefully executed combinations dominated her first opponent. This was the confidence boost Eve needed as she sailed through the other preliminary rounds and saw her in the final against an English fighter who she once again dominated and out performed securing her a much deserved 1st place in her first ever tournament.

Moving onto 5th Category, Barry team consisted of Ben Bolanos, Cian Wilmot and James Shi.

A tough category for our guys losing both Cian and James in the early rounds, but Ben Bolanos came through in fine form and with the body armour being removed for the final round Ben came up against an opponent who was a good 30cm taller and 20kg heavier. Ben took some hard hits, but this only fuelled his determination in this round and game back much stronger and harder than his much larger opponent and took the win taking his tally up to 4 x 1st Places on the day.

Category 6 saw Barry students Leanne Lirio and Justine Bolanos in a small category of a round robin against a fellow countryman from another Welsh club, the 3 went 3 rounds against each other. Justine won both of her rounds, beating her team mate Leanne in the final round.

While Leanne won over the other welsh fighter but was just pipped to the top spot by Justine.

Justine took 1st and, matching her Older brother Ben Bolanos, Took 4 x 1st Places on the day. Leanne took a well-deserved 2nd Place.

Last up for the Cadet Knockdown was Barry Fighter, Jack Garrett (17) Up against an English fighter, Jack took a swift win over this fighter and went on to fight in the final against the same fighter he had in the Semi Contact.

His opponent (A 1st Kyu from a style who predominantly fight full contact) who has had much more experience in this type of fighting, Jack took some hard hits but stood strong, Jack’s superior flexibility and foot work saw him out manoeuvre his opponents attacks and took a clean score. The time ran out and Jack took the win, 2 x 1st Places for the day for Jack.

The final rounds for the day were the Full Contact rounds.

Here we saw, 3 entries from the Barry team, Paul Lambert 1st Kyu (46) entered into the Veterans Knockdown (over 40s). Marijus Lik 9th Kyu (25) fighting in the Novice Lightweight and Gareth Dutton 3rd Kyu (34) who was fighting for the first time on Open weight (graduated out of the Novice Knockdown).

Marijus was up first against one of IKO England’s London fighters.

A 1st Kyu (brown belt). Marijust stood firm against this much more experienced fighter.

Early into the round his opponent scored Wazari (half point) , Marijus wary of his opponents skill tried to pick him off while trying to keep his distance but his opponent kept him in check and knocked him out of the area resulting in warning and inevitably resulted in a disqualification to Marijus for the breaking of the rule.

However, Marijus settled for a 2nd Place and has come away with a much better understanding of area’s he needs to work on.

Paul up next in the Vets category.

Paul was up against a Black belt from South East freestyle karate, Paul fought strong against his younger opponent.

He took some strong hits, but his opponent caught Paul in the groin early on resulting in a warning, then during the battle Paul took a stumble and his opponent took a shot at Paul while he was down which is also illegal resulting in another warning to his opponent. Paul then managed to get his opponent out of the area resulting in yet another warning to his opponent resulting in disqualification, Paul took 1st Place.

Last up for the day was Gareth Dutton against a fellow Welshman from another IKO Wales Dojo.

The 2 were old adversary’s back in the Novice days, Gareth went in very confident against his Black Belt opponent.

The 2 heavyweights are renowned hard hitters, Gareth, so heavily concentrating on his punching power gave a barrage of heavy shots into his opponent, however, his opponent found the gap he was looking for and caught Gareth under the ribs with a hard Shita Tsuki (Short punch) which dropped him temporarily.

Gareth bounced back up, clearly shaken and disappointed with himself after giving away this half point , went back in pushing to try and regain the half point, however this was not to be the case, his opponent caught him again this time dropping him for the knockout.

Gareth settled for a 2nd Place and has come away with new knowledge and areas to work on.

The results for the Barry team were 19 x 1st Places , 13 x 2nd Places and 5 x 3rd Places

Chief Instructor Sensei Phill Sedgmond said: “Yet another great comp for us, amazing results and I’m very proud of my team. They all worked very hard over the months running up to the tournament, some have retained their previous titles, some have achieved new titles.”

Barry Kyokushin now train out of the brand-new South Wales Martial arts Academy just off Holton Rd and Broad street. They currently have beginners’ classes Mondays through to Thursdays. For enquiries please call 01446 700366 or visit www.bkkc.co.uk or find them on Facebook.