Top Zim karateka wins World Cup title

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Tadious Manyepo

 

Harare - Zimbabwe top karateka, Samson Muripo, wrote another fairy-tale yet again after he scooped the Kyukushin Karate World Cup crown in Russia last week. 

Muripo made history in 2009 when he became the first African to win the Kyukushin World title whilst contesting in the middleweight category. 

And on Sunday, before an admiring crowd, the Zimbabwean was at his super best, flooring all before him to snatch the Veterans Open award. 

The iconic martial artist arrived back to a rousing welcome in Zimbabwe early this week. 

The gleeful star said he would be happy seeing others behind him achieving better things in the game. 

"I am happy for this achievement. I had put everything in training and left it all in the ring," said Muripo. 

"The tournament was tough in every respect. It had all the ingredients of a scintillating contest. 

"I would like to thank God for this magnificent achievement. 

"I am glad I managed to raise the country's flag high. I am proud to come from Southern Africa. It is the region which has won." 

Muripo has become one of the best Kyukushin stars in the world as he has always done well in international events, particularly the World Cup. 

A decade ago in Japan, Muripo, a middleweight fighter then, defied not only the odds but also the laws of physics as he shrugged off tough competition from world stars to bring the gong to Africa. 

Two years later, the revered karateka finished second in his division in the Kyukushin World Cup held in Kazakhstan to once again capture the imagination of the world. 

He has won several other international and regional tournaments in between and last week underlined his status as one of the most accomplished fighter in this type of martial arts.

Muripo dedicated his latest victory to his late father who died just before the fighter left for Russia for the world contest.

"My father passed on when I was already set to participate in the Kyukushin World Cup. It was sad and I had to take a very difficult decision to make the trip leaving people mourning my father behind.

"This achievement is for him. The Russia journey was naturally emotional so was my performance out there. I had to do it for him. I owe him everything so I had to make sure that at least I capture this crown to sooth his spirit wherever he is."

Muripo was the only one from Zimbabwe as two others who were scheduled to participate at the event couldn't eventually make the journey.

 

 

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