CUKC vs KUGB Northern Regions 2009

CUKC fought the Northern Regions squad in a friendly match on 24 October 2009 at Chesterton Sports Centre, Cambridge.

Photos

View photos of the competition.

Competition Report

On Saturday 24 November CUKC faced the KUGB Northern Regions squad on home territory. Coached by 2006 ESKA kumite champion Matt Price, the Northern squad consisted of many of the best fighters from the north of England, some of whom come to us freshly tanned and medalled from the World Shotokan Karate Association Championships in Mexico. Each fighter was to face 3 different opponents in a series of 27 matches under shobu ippon rules.

CUKC start out strong: Francisco Martinez, former Venezuelan state and national champion, takes the first fight for CUKC beating Joe Rawcliffe with two wazaris to one. Nim Sukumar (CUKC Men's captain), Thibault Flinois and Petre Nicolescu (making his fighting debut for CUKC) battle hard through the next three fights but are beaten back by a strong Northern squad. Fighting last in the order for the men, Paul Smith — CUKC veteran and current national squad member — won the final fight against Joe Hart to even the menís round out at 3-2 to the North.

Next up were the women. In her first appearance for CUKC, Emma Nunn fought Natasha Balycki but just lost out. Steph McTighe (Womenís Captain), Gosia Stanislawek and Madeleine Wood were also beaten by a strong Northern Regions womenís team in the first round. The North won the first round 7-2.

In the second round Paul and Francisco both defeated their opponents in the menís fights, whilst Emmaís light footwork ended her fight in a draw. Madeleine then followed this performance with a determined assault on Northern Regionsí Jade Fortune, securing a 0-0 draw. The second round goes to Northern Regions 5-2.

Two rounds down, the determination and energy the CUKC fighters put into this final round was a credit to the club. Paul and Francisco again dominated their opponents with decisive victories, whilst Emma secured the first win in the womenís competition. Reserve fighter Tegwen Ecclestone took on the last fight with world silver medallist Ashley Scott with great spirit, but eventually lost in a tight match. The final score in the third round was 6-3 to the North, meaning an overall victory for the Northern Regions.

Special commendation should go to Paul and Francisco, who won 3 out of 3 fights against randomly selected international fighters, and special recognition is due to Petre Nicolescu and Emma Nunn making their debuts fighting for CUKC.

After the competition there was time to show the Northern Regions team Cambridge, consisting of the Portland Arms, Aki-Teri followed by Jesus Bar, Soultree, and ending appropriately with the van of death.

The Cambridge squad were: Francisco Martinez, Nim Sukumar, Thibault Flinois, Petre Nicolescu, Paul Smith, Emma Nunn, Steph McTighe, Gosia Stanislawek, Madeleine Wood and Tegwen Ecclestone, with coach Richard Poole. The Northern Regions squad were: Tom Little, Joe Hart, Joe Rawcliffe, Nick Smith, Daryn Hobden, Natasha Balyckyi, Mel Finlay, Jade Fortune and Ashley Scott, with coach Matt Price. Many thanks to the referees, Nick Heald, Malcolm Howlett, Ken Hori, Zoe Starr and Ron Fennell. Also thanks to Jane Blunt for first aid and Lia Howlett for timing and scoring.

Overall

Round 1: Cambridge 2-7 North
Round 2: Cambridge 2-5 North
Round 3: Cambridge 3-6 North

Overall: Cambridge 7-18 North