United Styles Association Open May 2012

5 Competitors 3 Bronze, 1 Silver!

On Sunday, 20th May, Khalsa Champions travelled to Dudley, near Birmingham for Paul Campbell's USA Open Tournament.

The club took a small junior squad to this tournament, consisting of Francesca Hardcastle, Prabhjit Sehra, Thomas Dugdale, Noah Allen and Josh Dugdale.

Khalsa found the tournament to be well organized, and overall, the officiating and control was extremely well done. Categories were not as large as at some competitions, but each category was filled with competitive fighters.

Noah and Josh were drawn into the same category on opposite sides of the bracket. Josh was first up and fought a very nice fight to win 5-2, sending him into the final after a no show for his first fight. He then faced the fighter that had previously defeated Noah and fought courageously, but fell behind and although looking capable, had to settle for Silver. Noah drew a tough fighter from PC Karate in the first round and the two fought an entertaining match, ending with Noah winning 10-7. Noah then fought for a place in the final against Josh, but after injury and a slight mental lapse, fell to his opponent 6-4. It was still great to have both of our competitors in this category on the podium. For Josh, he was young and small in this category, so he has done very well! Well done Josh and Noah!

Tom was up next, and his category, like all of them on the day, had some very nice fighters. Tom had a bye in the first round, but fought a nice fight in the second round to take a 2-0 win. Tom then faced another good fighter and was getting stronger with a 4-1 win. In the semi-final, Tom then faced the eventual winner and fought a strong fight. Tom looked like winning as we approached the buzzer at 4-4, but gave up a last second score for a 4-5 loss and had to settle for bronze. Tom was very impressive in the semi-final and has hopefully learned a little from it. Well done on a bronze in a seriously hot category!

We then had PJ fighting in the under 45kg category (PJ weighs 33kgs!!!) and it was seriously competitive. PJ drew a finalist in the second round and did everything right for 1:59sec. PJ pushed the fight and was 2-2 at the buzzer when a Sambon scored against. It was a real pity as PJ defied all odds to get to the point where the flags were probably in his favour. A score line of 5-2 doesn't seem right, but again, the lesson is there to be learned so that PJ can win the big tournaments.

Lastly was Fran, and she also had a first round bye. Fran then fought a familiar opponent to our club, who represents England. As seemed to be the theme of the day, Fran did most things right for nearly the entire fight and actually held a 3-2 lead going into the last 10 seconds of the fight. Fran got picked off to level the score at 3-3 and then found herself drawn in and gave up a last second gyak to lose this one 3-4. It did seem a little unfortunate to settle for bronze, but as was the theme of the day; our lesson was to manage the end of the fight a little better. Well done Fran, you looked great!

Sensei Sat commented "Today was a very frustrating, as the team have a worked on several techniques which saw them win the last 4/5 competitions consecutively including the English Championships, however, this weekend none of those techniques came to fruition.
We were losing silly points and not sticking to the game plan, which meant that we should have had at least 3 more finalists. For Tom, Prabhjit and Fran to loose the point in the last seconds of each fight cost us three potential Gold's, a lesson that has to be learned. Never the less even on a bad day we still managed to medal 4 out 5 fighters which overall is a very positive sign. The team are showing their capabilities and it is really encouraging to see them all flourish, having fun and sticking together as a team.

My thanks go to Coaches Chris, Debbie and Sophie for admin, coaching and preparation for this weekend!!

Well done team and 1000 press ups next week!!!!"

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