MANCHESTER YOUTH OPEN 4.11.2017

Only two weeks after the North of England we had our final external tournament of 2017 down Manchester. A new competition aimed at young students under 18 years of age. With some really good categories aimed at low grade students I expected a big turn out from Dokan.

 

What I actually got was over 30 students withdrawing their names from the list of those attending leaving me with only 18 students willing to take part. Still this is a big squad by most clubs standards. The 18 that made the journey did not regret their decision at all with everyone of them winning a medal. There was a fantastic debut from Emily Sproat who took two silver and a kumite fighting gold. Emma Snaith took gold in all four sections she entered with an outstanding display of skill and yet again Katie Hunnam proved what a rising star she is on the fighting front.

I was immensely pleased with all of my students throughout the day and the atmosphere inside a comfortably sized venue was fantastic. The tournament was a friendly affair on the whole and the medals were nice too. 

Regarding refereeing, it was as good as any British competition we attend, which basically means the overall standard was fair enough, we had some good decisions and a couple of rather bad ones in kata. The bad decisions have played on my mind since the event and I realise more than ever it is not just the association judges that vote with their heart and not their eyes or even go for the badge. Even when we attend big national events it is down to luck who you get on your area and all that hard work your student has put in can count for little if we get refs that vote for a badge or do not like our association. It is a sad situation and I can do nothing about this.

The day finished on an exciting buzz again with our three girl kumite teams all taking gold in tough tight matches and our 10 to 11 year old boys narrowly missing out on a gold of their own. All in all and one way or another this was a great day for all those that entered.

I fully intend to support this tournament again next year and hope to take a larger squad with me.