Mysuru, June 15:- The Karate Association of India, the only recognised national federation for karate in India, which is affiliated to the Indian Olympic Association, organised Senior National Karate Championships at Jawaharlal Nehru Indoor Stadium in Chennai on June 10 and 11.
The championship was inaugurated by KAI lifetime president, former mayor of Chennai Karate R Thiagarajan, president M Kanakaraj, vice-president C S Arun Machaiah, general secretary Lal Darda, administrative secretary Altaf Alam, treasurer Paramjeet Singh along with WKF, AKF judges and KAI officials.
Around 300 participants from Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Punjab, Jharkhand, Orissa, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, West Bengal, Goa, Puducherry, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka took part in this prestigious kata and kumite tournament.
The 12-member Karnataka karate team was led by AKSKA president C S Arun Machaiah, vice-president K P Jose, general secretary Bharghav Reddy, AKF judges Nagendra Babu, Sooraj, Shibu Antony, Kumite head coach Dheeraj and kata head coach B S Srinath Urs.
Mysuru’s karate sensation Deia Urs pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism at Vidhyaashram College at jayalakshmipuram, who took part in the championship, won bronze in the senior female individual kata category.
She had a tough draw and was pooled along with current senior national champion Valena Valentina in the qualifiers. After the preliminary eliminations, a group of 16 karatekas were divided into two pools. Contestants had to perform in their respective groups and, three contestants in each group who scored the highest points qualified for the finals.
Deia qualified for the finals by securing 24.82 points and being placed second in her group, while Valena Valentina stood first by securing 25.34 points. However, in the finals, experienced Valena Valentine of Orissa won the gold, Raja Rajeshwari of Tamil Nadu took the silver while Deia S Urs along with Shradha Dharadhar of Maharashtra settled for the bronze.
By winning the bronze medal, Deia has become the first female ever from Karnataka to win a medal at the Karate Association of India Senior Karate Championship in female individual kata. In the entire history of Karate Association of India National Championships, so far no female from Karnataka has won a medal in the individual kata category. Deia has made Karnataka proud by achieving this.
Karnataka had a tally of 2 silver and 2 bronze medals. Others to win medals are, Shalini (-55 kg) and Rachana Siddesh (-61 kg) of Bengaluru, silver medals in female kumite while, Amal Sooraj (+84 Kg) took bronze in the male kumite category.
Deia, who holds black belt degrees in three different karate styles, is trained by her father Srinath Urs. Both practice under All India Shito Ryu Karate Do Union president Kyoshi C S Arun Machaiah and Shihan E S.Kumar, who is the deputy technical director of Karate Association of India. (MR)