National karate squad haul medals in Qld tourney

The Papua New Guinea Karate team won six gold medals at the Queensland Karate Championships last week in Brisbane.

The team won four silver and five bronze medals as well.

All fighters who represented PNG at the championship are members of the elite squad.
The team comprised Crystal Mari, who was the only female athlete, Nigel Bana, Cosmas Saliawali, Leonard Gariadi, Naorei Joseph, Francis Oa Jr and athlete/coach Julius Piku.

Mari won gold in the junior female kyu kata, gold in female kyu kata (16 years and over), gold in female kyu kumite and silver in the female black belt kata, where she narrowly lost to the Queensland senior kata champion, Alexandra Armour, by one point.

Bana won gold in men’s senior kumite under-65kg, and bronze in men’s kyu individual kata.
Saliawali got silver in the men’s kyu kata, silver in kyu kumite and bronze in the black belt men’s kumite 65kg.

Gariadi won gold in the men’s kyu kata, gold in kyu kumite 80kg and silver in the black belt senior kumite 80kg.

Joseph snared a bronze medal in men’s kyu kumite, while Francis Oa Junior won gold in the men’s junior kyu kata and bronze in junior kumite.

The men’s team kata (Bana, Cosmas and Nigel) took bronze.

Team manager Francis Mairi thanked the government for funding the team’s participation through the Go for Gold programme and through the PNG Olympic Committee.

Mairi thanked the head coach Sensei Trevor Roberts who joined and coached the team in Brisbane.

Crystal returned yesterday, Mairi, Naorei and Francis returns today while the rest of the team will return on Sunday after attending training at the Shotokan Karate Budokai Honbu at Camira, Queensland.

The karate federation is preparing to host the 8th PNG Open Karate Championships in Port Moresby from April 3 – 4.



Newspaper at The National
The National is a local daily Papua New Guinean newspaper.

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