The 29th State Karate Championship concluded here on Saturday with East Khasi Hills winning both the women’s and men’s overall champions titles.
The two-day event at the JN Indoor Stadium in Polo Ground was organised by the All Meghalaya Karate-Do Association (AMKA), with support from the Directorate of Sports and Youth Affairs, Government of Meghalaya. A total of 372 karatekas, from below 10 years of age up to the senior level, took part from around the state.
The chief guest on the second and final day was Prof Dr C Daniala, Medical Superintendent of NEIGRIHMS. Other dignitaries who graced the occasion included Meghalaya State Olympic Association (MSOA) General Secretary Finely L Pariat, MSOA Executive Council Member Dipshon Ryntathiang and Deputy Chief Accounts Officer of MeECL Aiborlang Shabong.
The quality of action was of a high standard, with the karatekas demonstrating fine technique in both the kata (form) and kumite (sparring) events, developed and refined over months and even years of disciplined training, and was highly appreciated by the guests, family members and well-wishers present.
Ri-Bhoi finished a close second in the race for the men’s title, while West Jaintia Hills were runners-up in the women’s category.
The Best Karateka in the boys’ division was Hymnson Challam of West Jaintia Hills. He won gold in the Boys’ 13 Years kumite event. The Best Karateka in the men’s division was Paul Danny Kharmudai of East Khasi Hills. He won two gold medals in the Men’s +60kg kumite and Men’s Open kata events.
In the girls’ division, the Best Karateka award went to Kimjonlhing Silthou of East Khasi Hills, who won gold in the Girls’ 8 Years kumite. Rebeka Nongspung, also of East Khasi Hills, won the corresponding women’s title with two gold medals in the Women’s -50kg kumite and Women’s Open kata.
The karatekas will now continue to train for next month’s 5th Meghalaya Games, which will take place in Tura. Some will also be preparing for various tournaments outside the state; AMKA has produced more than 200 karatekas who have won medals at national and international events over the four decades since it was founded.