HARARE - OVER 200 karatekas from four Southern African countries will next month converge in Zimbabwe’s capital Harare for the annual All-Africa So-Kyokushin championships which returns after a two-year hiatus.
The contest will see athletes from South Africa, Zambia, eSwatini and the hosts fighting for honours.
The Zimbabwe So-Kyokushin Karate-Do Organisation organised tournament was introduced in 2015 but some logistical flaws saw it being shelved in the past two years.
But from July 27 to 28, tight duels are expected as winning fighters will proceed to represent the region in international tournaments.
Zimbabwe Karate Union technical director (full contact), Kumbirai Musinami, said all was set for the event which will be graced by respected dignitaries from across the globe.
“We can gladly confirm the return of the All-Africa So-Kyokushin Karate Championships which had taken a break in the past two years.
“Zimbabwe, eSwatini, South Africa and Zambia will participate in this tournament which is slated for July 27 to July 28 at the Chitungwiza Aquatic Complex.
“Athletes are already busy preparing for the tournament and some of the Zimbabwean fighters have retreated to the countryside to get into the mood.
“We are looking forward to a very good tournament. We can safely say all is now set for this annual event and this year promises to be bigger and even better,” he said.
Zimbabwean fighters who used to dominate have been on a downward trend of late and will be looking forward to regain lost glory.
They have failed to give a good account of themselves in recent events which they have taken part in.
Just last month, they were subdued in the ACKO Regional Karate tournament in Thokoza, South Africa, where they failed to assert themselves.
But Musinami believes the fighters will this time turn up at the party and give their all to win.
“We have tried and will keep on shaping and conditioning for the tournament. We have noticed that our medal tally has dipped and the fighters are training hard to be more clinical in this tournament.
“All the fighters have been preparing for this event since they came back from Thokoza,” he said.