KUGB National Championships 2018

The KUGB National Championships are held annually and feature the most talented karateka in the KUGB. Any CUKC member can compete. KUGB Nationals 2018


View photos of the competition.

Competition Report

A squad of 7 brave karateka travelled the relatively short way to Leicester on May 5th, where the KUGB Nationals took place this year. Everyone was ready to go and keen to perform at this very high standard competition.

Like so often, the day started with individual kata. Three CUKC competitors were lining up to show their skill during the Heian elimination phase. Iulia Comsa, "only" being a 3rd kyu, performed a solid Heian Yondan and comfortably beat her black-belt opponent in this all-grades category. Unfortunately she faced a KUGB squad member in her next round and only came in second, despite a spirited performance.

For the men CUKC had sent Marcus Ingham and Philip Rupp, competing in different pools of the same category. Philip made his way through 2 rounds, performing strong and sharp Heian katas, before being defeated by the eventual winner of the pool. Marcus made his way through the elimination phase with ease and comfortably entered the semi-finals. Here, he performed a strong Empi, but did unfortunately not enter the finals and had to seek his luck in kumite.

Here CUKC was represented by 5 well-trained individuals: Francisco Martinez, Vlad Soltuz, Marcus Ingham, as well as Jerome and Herve Vandekerckhove.

As expected, Francisco, Vlad and Jerome fought vigorously and managed to get through several rounds, but did not manage to enter the finals.

Marcus had similar bad luck, getting disqualified after breaking his opponent's nose with a very beautiful, but slightly less controlled, jodan ura mawashi geri.

Herve, being seeded after medalling the previous year, was calmly watching the elimination rounds and waiting for his unlucky opponent to be determined, just to crush him. After an exquisite performance, he entered the semi-final, where he faced many-times-medallist Ray Tucker. The fight was intense, both competitors giving all they have. After no one had managed to score after a minute extension, the judges chose Ray as winner of the fight, leaving Herve with a hard-fought bronze medal.

The last event for CUKC was male team kumite. We had 2 teams lined up. Team A (Herve, Jerome, Fransisco) was seeded and had to wait, while team B (Vlad, Marcus, Philip) had to line up for the first round of the eliminations. They were ready, they were keen and they were thirsty for blood. Unfortunately, so were their opponents and they had to accept a defeat in their first round.
All hope was now resting on team A, and they did not disappoint! Winning 3 or 3 fights they secured a place in the semi-finals. Here they faced a team of 3 multiple times international kumite medallists. Not intimidated at all, they fought with spirit and gave a good performance, but were ultimately defeated by the eventual category winners. However, they were awarded a well deserved bronze medal!

Here is a list of the Squad and their achievements:

Herve Vandekerckhove (bronze - individual kumite, bronze team kumite)

Francisco Martinez (bronze team kumite)

Jerome Vandekerckhove (bronze team kumite)

Vlad Soltuz

Marcus Ingham

Philip Rupp

Iulia Comsa