Shillong, Aug 16: The All Meghalaya Karate-Do Association announced today that four of its young karatekas will take part in the prestigious Thailand Open Karate-Do Championship in Phuket from 19th August.

The four – Ferdinand S Rani, Gregorwilson Makdoh, Saralin Rynghang and Damanbha Pde (pictured with coaches Mingson Rymbai, Donboklang Lyngdoh and Arjun Sewa) – are some of the up and coming Meghalaya karatekas who have already won medals at state, regional and national tournaments.

They will leave for New Delhi on 18th August where they will join the rest of the Indian contingent and then depart for Thailand on the morning of 19th August.

The kumite (bouts) and kata (form and movement demonstration) will then begin on 20th August, with the tournament scheduled to conclude on 23rd August. The karatekas will then return to India the following day.

Last month, Pde had won a silver medal and Rynghang a bronze at the All India Karate Championship in Chhattisgarh. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, Makdoh and Rani had won gold and bronze medals respectively at the Kanninjuku National Shoto Cup Karate Championship in Maharashtra.

“The association wants to give international exposure to our young karatekas because for two years they were not able to take part,” AMKA President Hunlang Lytan said at a recent send-off function for the four, referring to the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. “These youngsters have taken part in national tournaments but there is a big difference between these and international competitions,” he added while thanking the parents for supporting the youngsters on their journey.

AMKA also thanked Hanshi Bharat Sharma, Karate India Organisation Mentor, for his constant support to Meghalaya karatekas. The Association also thanked KIO President Sensei Vijay Tiwari, General Secretary Sensei Sanjeev Jangra and Treasurer Sensei Mutum Bankim Singh for their help.

AMKA has a rich history of bringing medals and honour to Meghalaya and this is not the first time that its karatekas have travelled abroad for foreign competitions. In November 2019, Wandahunshisha Mawblei won gold for India at the 5th South Asian Karate Championship in Bangladesh. Going back further, Damang Syngkon won a gold at the South Asian Games in 1999. Syngkon, Linza F Syiem and Wandashisa Warjri won Meghalaya’s only medals at the 34th National Games in 2011.

“The Thailand Open is a big tournament that attracts many top karatekas from around the world. The last time there were karatekas who then went on to compete in last year’s Olympic Games, so this is a golden chance for our four youngsters,” AMKA General Secretary Ksan Kupar Warjri said, while praising the coaches Donboklang Lyngdoh, Arjun Sewa, Linza Syiem and Mingson Rymbai. “I hope the karatekas do well, perform with a lot of spirit and come back and share with their fellow young karatekas all that they learnt from the tournament.”

The four karatekas will be taking part in their first international tournament and if they were nervous, they did not show it at the send-off. They all thanked AMKA, their coaches and parents for the support and hoped to do well at the event.

(All Meghalaya Karate-Do Association photo)

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