JKA World Cup – Ones to watch…. (0 comments)
So coming into the last week or so before the JKA World Cup kicks off, which teams should we be watching out for? Which teams are historically strong and which may spring a surprise on everyone? Don’t forget more info on the event can be found here at the JKA Ireland website.
It goes without saying that Japan are always very strong throughout all the categories- both Seniors and Juniors. At the JKA World Cup, technique and ability levels are so high across the board that competition is extremely fierce for all podium places.
In the men’s Kumite division there are so many difficult teams with spirited squads that, although Japan may be favourite to maintain their position, every match will be tough and strong. Russia, Brazil, Italy, Norway and Belgium are always there – especially Belgium who were World Cup finalists in 2014. Also don’t forget our own team who lost to Belgium in the latter stages. Whilst watching all these guys, don’t take your eyes away from South Africa who have the experience of Sensei Johan La Grange to draw upon. Vintage footage alert: 8th World Cup, tale end of the clip is Kokobun Sensei and La Grange Sensei in the Kumite Final.
On the ladies side, Dave Brailsford’s theory of “marginal gains” is clear for all to see. The competition between the major nations is so tight that even the tiniest of improvements in just one area can make the difference and affect the finishing order. Japan are once again strong however don’t forget Germany, Norway, the Czech Republic, Russia and also our own ladies team. Having taken silver in team kumite at the last two World Cups, England ladies have a wealth of experience in competing under pressure and how to compete in team matches. Sensei Gary Stewart has marked our team down as definitely one to watch for this very reason. Have a look at the extended footage of the 2014 ladies final.
Of course there are more JKAE members than just the ladies and men’s senior teams, we also have a thriving juniors section participating. For example Endri Krasnigi will be looking to build on his 2014 success and take it to the opposition. Lots of competition and lots of opportunity – anyone could make their mark!
Wherever you are JKAE will keep you updated, make sure you like our Facebook page for updates throughout the Wold Cup period and get behind the Squad!