GKR Australian Championships 2009
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Back to Sydney and the Whitlam Centre for the 2009 Championships and it was a smaller than usual entry of around 500 that took part. Numbers were obviously effected by the World Cup in Melbourne in August but still keen competition was expected across all divisions. The traditional State by State march in started the day off, with the welcoming and opening ceremony following.
The small South Australian Team of 18 competitors had a great Tournament, winning 5 National Titles, 3 Runners Up, 4 Third places and 8 fourth places. In all 9 different people took home a medal, with another 6 just missing out finishing 4th in kata or kumite - a fantastic effort and congratulations to all. In Juniors, our most successful competitor was Lateilia Mobbs who won Kata in the 8-9 year 6-4th kyu division. Lateilia won her 1st round kumite bout but was eliminated in the second round. In the 12-13 year age group, Michael Davies (8-7th kyu division) and Aaron Hittmann (6-4th kyu division) both missed out on medals by 0.1 to finish in 4th place in large divisions. In Kumite they both were unsuccessful in their first round bouts. Tegan Miller placed second in her 14-15 year 3rd kyu+ Female Kata division, but also missed out in Kumite. The 18-34 years division had several of the South Australians competing. Suzanne Beagley placed 3rd in Kumite and 4th in Kata in her Female 8-7th kyu section. Mark Ingle won the Kata in the Male 6-4th kyu section, but missed out in Kumite. The female section of this division had 4 of our ladies competing, with Tamsin Stanton placing third in both Kata and Kumite. Tamsin initially tied for second and was 2.5 all in kumite so it could have been even a bit better. Tabatha Dodds placed 4th in Kata, with Angela Johnson and Kirsty Webb both mid range in Kata. All were either 1st or 2nd round casualties in Kumite. Nik McDonald took out second place in Kata and then won the Kumite in the male 3-1st kyu section, with David Weir 4th in both events. On to the 35-44 year section and it was a successful day for both our Male competitors. In the 6-4th kyu Male section, Craig Johnson took out the kata event and then came runner up in the Kumite. Daniel Tregenza won the Kata in the Male 3rd kyu+ section but came foul of the officials in Kumite after leading early. Linda Donnellan placed fourth out of 16 in her 6-4th kyu Kata division and did not compete in Kumite. In the 45 years + age group, John McDonald (Male 3rd kyu+) came 3rd in his ring for Kata, just missing out on making the final, but an injury from this event, restricted him in Kumite to exit early. Jenny Miller placed 4th in Kata in the Female section but placed third in Kumite. Our only Open Black Belt competitor was Lesley McDonald. In Female Kata, Lesley made the final but just missed out to place fourth. A great effort in a very strong Female division. Lesley was drawn against reigning World Cup Champion Samantha Palmer in the first round and although Lesley sparred well, she was outclassed. A great effort by all South Australians and a most competitive effort by all.
The highlight of any Tournament is the Black Belt events and there was some great competition in both the Male and Female Divisions. Male Kata was won by Dean Gould, from Ashley Fleming, with Christopher Drewson third. Claudine Chicheportiche took out the Female Kata event from Shari Lembryk, with Samantha Palmer third. In Male Sparring, Dean Gould and Ashley Fleming made it a all NSW final, and it was Dean that took out the National Championship. Mark Farello took out a close bout to place third. Female Kumite was also very close and it was Claudine Chicheportiche that outpointed Samantha Palmer to win the title. Bec Ewer took out the third place bout.
Thanks to John McDonald, Linda Donnellan and Tabitha Dodds for photos and results.