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Abdul Zahra receives his National Kumite Judge ‘A’.

This was an outstanding achievement given it was Abdul’s first attempt at a National event. Abdul was assessed over (3) gruelling days of high level competition at the Australian Open held in Melbourne by the National Referees Council – NRC (all WKF Referees) and was awarded his National kumite Judge ‘A’.

On behalf of the NSW Referees Council and Miyagikan (Abdul’s extended family) Congratulations!!

Photo L – R Mohamed Rajab, Glenn Goodwin, Abdul Zahra, Con Papanikoloau


Men’s Team GOLD! (Foti, Tsuneari, Matt, Michael, Dan & Affif)

TOP ROW (left to right): Michael: 1x Silver (U21 -75), Matt Tickle: 1x Gold (+84kg), 1x Silver (Open), Tsuneari: 2x Gold (-67kg, Open), Foti: Super coach, Jonnie: 1x Silver (Junior +76), Nay Nay: 1x Gold (Kids +57kg), Affif: 1x Silver (-60kg), Charmaine: 2x Gold (Kyu Kata, Kyu +60kg), Big Mo: Awesomeness Award
BOTTOM ROW (left to right): Arika: 1x Gold (U21 -60kg), 1x Bronze (-61kg), Seira: 1x Gold (-55kg), 1x Silver (U21 -53kg), Kristina: 2x Gold (-61, Open), 1x Bronze (Kata), Alak: Cheeky monkey, Shihan: Super-duper coach, Dean: Super coach, Shawn: 2x Bronze (Cadet -57kg, Cadet Open), Nicole: Little Ninja, Omar: Killer Kataman, Dan: 1x Silver (U21 -67kg)

Women’s Team Silver (Seira, Arika & Kristina)


The weather forecasters warned us, but there was no way of predicting how insufferable the heat would be inside the Whitlam Centre on Saturday. All involved faded slowly as the the weekend progressed, but still managed to put on a good show with some great fights and kata across the divisions. Being a compulsory event for all nominees of the Australian team, there was a great turn out with a notably strong women’s categories, made even meatier with the combination of weight categories adding to the quality of match ups.

Miyagi Kan came away with a lot of medals (detailed results to be published soon).

In spite of the weather, the competition highlighted a motivated beginning to kick off the karate season in New South Wales.

Welcome 2011!
After a relaxing and much needed break after the competitions in 2010, we greet the new season with the inaugural Sydney International. The competition will introduce the new WKF competition rules to Australia and promises to be a fantastic event.
Multiple international competitors, local and international WKF Referees, WKF medalists from the recent World Championships in Belgrade, as well as all members of the Australian National Squad will be participating.

From a quick glance at the page, the confirmed nations who will be taking part are:
– France
– Afghanistan
– Singapore
– New Caledonia
– New Zealand

Competition Information
Date: Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 February 2011
Venue: Whitlam Leisure Centre, Memorial Avenue, Liverpool, SYDNEY Australia
Time: 8:30am (Saturday & Sunday)

Provisional Schedule:

Juniors (16 & 17yrs)
Under 21 (18-20yrs)
Seniors (18yrs & above)

Children (9-13yrs)
Cadets (14 & 15yrs)


The following summary has been taken from our friends who write the “(Unofficial) NSW-AKF Newsletter/ World Championship Issue/ 24 – 5 Nov 2010”.
Check out their website… so pro!
p.s. Team photos from the Championship will be uploaded ASAP!

The Championship
875 Competitors 88 Countries, with each country only allowed to select one competitor per division, only the best of the best.

James Giuliano -Kata Individual Male
The Individual Kata category had 54 competitors. James was on the same side of the draw as Minh Dack and Luca Valdesi. A great opportunity to compete.
He was up 3rd – Ao with Sei/Chin against the USA’s William Bradford (Bas Dai). Unfortunately the flags went against him and 2 rounds later Bradford lost to Minh Dack of France and thus no repercharge. The final results were
1 Antonio Diaz (VEN)
2 Luca Valdesi (ITA)
3 Itaru Oki (JPN)
3 Akio Tamashiro (PER)

Jessica Bratich- Kumite Female -68kg
43 competitors – up against Tunisia in the 1st fight of the division. Unfortunately Jessica lost 3-0 and the Tunisian lost the next round to Netherlands.

Alysha Dew- Kumite Female -55 kg
53 Competitors – Alysha had a bye first round and had to wait for her first fight against Algeria, which she lost 1-0. The Algerian won her next fight but then lost to the Japanese (eventual winner).

Tsuneari Yahiro- Kumite Male -60 kg
Another big division 58 Competitors – Tsuneari also had a bye first round and had to wait for his first fight against Russia. He had a narrow loss 1-0. The Russian lost the next round.

Kristina Mah- Kumite Female -61 kg
49 fighters. Kristina was at the bottom of the draw with a bye in the 1st round. a really long wait to fight the Mexican who had beaten the Turkish competitor. After beating her 1-0 She came up against Japan. 3-2 later she was in the 4th round against Canada. She won this fight 4-1 and then to go through to the final beat England 4-1. Australia now had a finalist in a WKF world Championship for the first time since 1996. We would have to wait 2 days for the finals where she would face the French Champion who had beaten Elisa Au, the USA world Champion to get to the final. Kristina went on to win 1-0 and become Australia’s first World Champion since 1992.

Thank you to “The WKF FAN for his videos on youtube!

3rd Round – Y.Miyamoto (JAP) v K.Mah (AUS)

Semi-Final – N.Williams (ENG) v K.Mah (AUS)

Final – L.Dona(FRA) v K.Mah (AUS)
(warning, be prepared for French screaming in the background!)

CONGRATULATIONS!! to Con Papanikolaou and Mohamed Rajab who successfully passed to the level of Oceania Judge A at the recent Oceania Championships at Tahiti.
What a place to do an accreditation!
WKF here they come!!

Thanks Glenn Goodwin for the photos.


Bronze Medalist in -60kg Men’s Kumite at the Inaugural World Combat Games in Beijing, China.

Tsuneari is the first Australian Senior Men’s karate competitor to step onto the podium at a WKF World Karate Event in 13 years.

WCG Aussie Team:
Coach: Shihan George Barounis
Tsuneari Yahiro (-60kg male kumite)
Leon Romary (-75kg male kumite)
Maria Alexiadis (-50kg female kumite)

Check out the official website for schedules and results of the competition…

“Beijing hosts the first SportsAccord World Combat Games

From August 27 to September 4 2010, Beijing hosts the first SportAccord Combat Games ever. They are the first corner stone in a series of new worldwide multi-sports events SportAccord is going to launch in the coming years: The Mind Games will follow in 2011 and the World Beach Games in 2012. The Combat Games 2010 feature 13 martial arts and combat sports, both Olympic and non-Olympic. “We want to support our members by giving them the opportunity to get exposure to a worldwide audience. The Combat Games offer the participating sports a unique chance to be on stage together and will bring them closer to the public, “ SportAccord President Hein Verbruggen explains the strategy behind the Games.

The Beijing Local Organising Committee will provide competition venues and training facilities that meet highest international standards. The 13 sports are distributed to three venues, all Olympic venues in 2008 and in close distance to the athletes’ hotels and the airport.

A highlight of the Beijing Combat Games 2010 will be the Ambassador Program. “We have very good news, “ says Li Jinkang, Secretary General of the Beijing Local Organising Committee. “International movie star Jet Li will be Ambassador for the martial art of Wushu. He is not only a great actor and champion but he shows also outstanding social commitment. We will be very honoured to welcome him in Beijing.” Jet Li will lead the squad of famous celebrities and champions such as kickboxing legend Don “the Dragon” Wilson or Olympic gold medallist in Wrestling, Rulon Gardener, that will act as representatives for their disciplines and the Games in general. They will participate in various activities around the Games and will contribute to the atmosphere during the whole week.

Additionally, the Combat Games will feature a Cultural Program reflecting the ancient traditions of martial arts as well as the social and cultural values of the 13 sports and the event as a whole. The Program includes a Forum on August 29 featuring the theme “The Art of Combat -Friendship and Determination” and several thematic exhibitions. Topics will deal with the cultural dimensions of the martial arts and their social value and contribution to society.

Key facts of the SportAccord World Combat Games 2010 in Beijing:
* 13 martial arts and combat sports
* 1108 athletes - from five continents
* 136 gold medals awarded
* 8 days of competition
* 3 competition venues, 1 training venue”

Reference: About CG (

Congratulations to all the competitors for their results over the weekend in Sydney!

Miyagi Kan (and friends) results will be added to this post asap.

But here is a .pdf of a list of the FULL Results of the 2010 WesTrac National Karate Championships

(Thanks to Petar Georgieff for his photos)


President’s Cup Men’s Team, Iran (September)
This an all male competition and Australia is sending 5 competitors to compete in individual and team kumite events.
Tsuneari Yahiro (-60kg male kumite)
Shannon Barton (-67kg male kumite)
Serge Mykhaylenko (-67kg male kumite)
Leon Romary (-75kg male kumite)
Tommy Hallam (-75kg male kumite)

WKF World Championships Team, Serbia (October)
Tsuneari Yahiro (-60kg male kumite)
Kristina Mah (-61kg female kumite)
Leon Romary (-75kg male kumite)
Jessica Bratich (-68kg female kumite)
James Giuliano (male kata)

Come along to watch and support the our club and the NSW karate team!

Venue: Whitlam Leisure Centre Memorial Avenue, Liverpool, Sydney NSW
Starting time: 8am everyday
A brief overview of the events are:
– Children and Cadets (14-15yrs) Kata and Kumite
– Senior Kata
– Junior (16-17yrs) Kata and Kumite
– Children, Cadet & Junior Team Kumite
– Senior Individual Kumite Eliminations
– Senior Individual Kata and Kumite FINALS
– Senior Kumite Open (Elimination and Finals)
– Senior Team Kumite

Click the link to download a .pdf of a complete schedule of events for the weekend:

GOOD LUCK to all the competitors!!

(Photographer: Petar Georgieff)

Australian Team Announcements…

CONGRATULATIONS!!! to all the competitors of Miyagi Kan and Friends who have been selected to represent Australia at the Oceania Championships in Tahiti (September), The Copenhagen Open (October) and the World Combat Games (July).

Nathan Economou (Oceania)
Jonnie Economou (Oceania)
Arika Kanakzawa (Oceania)
Dan Kanazawa (Oceania)
Eugene Orlov (Oceania/ Copenhagen)
Angel Georgieff (Oceania/ Copenhagen)
Alexander Georgieff (Oceania)
Georgi Georgieff (Oceania/ Copenhagen)
Michael Eldred (Oceania/ Copehagen)
Ihaka Nolan (Oceania)
Tsuneari Yahiro (World Combat Games)

More news from the camp will be posted soon.

A reminder to those interested in trying out for the National team or those wanting to train with the National Squad that registration forms need to be sent to the AKF office by next Friday 12 February 2010.

Training sessions are scheduled once a month, with one of the national coaches, that will take place at the Revesby dojo (for NSW athletes).

To find the forms, go to The AKF BULLETIN BOARD

You will also be able to download the 2010 AKF Calendar from there.

Jonathan Caruso (VIC) (Cadet Male -52kg)
Round 1: BYE
Round 2: AUS v Korea 3-1 WIN
Round 3: AUS v Bulgaria 1-0 WIN
Round 4: AUS v Italy 0-4 LOSS
Repecharge 1: Tunisia v Switzerland 4-0
Repecharge 2: AUS v Tunisia (referee decision) WIN
Repecharge 3 (Bronze Medal Match): AUS v France 1-4 LOSS
RESULT: 5th place

Amy Lea (VIC) (Junior female -59kg)
Round 1: AUS v Hungary 1-3 LOSS
No Repecharge

Megan Edwards (WA) (Junior female +59kg)
Round 1: BYE
Round 2: AUS v Senegal 4-0 WIN
Round 3: AUS v Spain 0-1 LOSS
No Repecharge

Joseph Byrne (VIC) (Junior male -55kg)
Round 1: AUS v Hungary 0-2 LOSS
No Repecharge


Seira Yahiro (Under 21 Female -53kg)
Round 1 : AUS v Slovakia 1-0 WIN
Round 2 : AUS v Canada 2-0 WIN
Round 3: AUS v Japan 0-2 LOSS
Repecharge 1: Scotland v England 1-0
Repecharge 2: AUS v Scotland 0-2 LOSS

Shaneel Chand (Under 21 Male -78kg)
Round 1: AUS v Slovakia 0-0 [Loss by decision]
No Repecharge

Arika Kanazawa (Junior Female -53kg)
Round 1: BYE
Round 2: AUS v Norway 4-0 WIN
Round 3: AUS v England 2-1 WIN
Round 4: AUS v Bosnia Herzegovina 0-1 LOSS
No Repecharge

Georgi Georgieff (Under 21 Male +78kg)
Round 1: AUS v Turkey 1-9 LOSS
No Repecharge

Michael Pearn (Under 21 Male -68kg)
Round 1: AUS v Palestine 6-0 WIN
Round 2: AUS v Mexico 0-1 LOSS
No Repecharge

Aaron McMahon (Junior Male -76kg)
Round 1: BYE
Round 2: AUS v Turkey 0-2 LOSS
No Repecharge

Amber Wilson (VIC) (Under 21 Female +60kg)
Round 1: BYE
Round 2: AUS v Slovakia 0-1 LOSS
No Repecharge

Samantha Simion (VIC) (Junior female Kata)
Round 1: BYE
Round 2: AUS v Serbia WIN
Round 3: AUS v China WIN
Round 4: AUS v Peru LOSS
No Repecharge

Rafe Wilson (VIC) (Junior Male Kata)
Round 1: AUS v USA LOSS
No Repecharge

Final Australian Medal Tally:
Kristina MAH – Gold (55-61kg female kumite)
Tommy HALLAM (QLD) – Bronze (70-75kg male kumite)
Megan EDWARDS (WA) – Bronze (+59kg 16-17years female kumite)

What a packed 7 days we had! After landing on Tuesday morning at 7AM after a over 24 hours of travelling… we went straight to the hotel to meet the rest of the team for training at 10AM! The team trained in a small dojo about 15 minutes away from our hotel. Everyone was in high spirits from the get go and this team spirit was built upon as the week progressed.

There were quite a few of us from the Aussie contingent including the President of the Australian Karate Federation, Sensei Michael Kassis, the coaches: Shihan Barounis, Marco Mezzanti from Melbourne, and Stephen Kelly from Brisbane; referees: Jeanette Lynch from Perth, Con Papanikolaou, and Peter Szalsy, also from Perth, and the team manager, Hani Zahra. As well as this, there were our appointed cheer quad of parents and family and of course the team. So a sizeable group who were all looking good, fresh and ready for the competition on the weekend.

The team met twice a day for training and stretching sessions and also for dinner. All this ‘bonding’ time definitely brought everyone closer together as everyone got to know others who they hadn’t previously talked to much at competitions. It was really nice to have everyone together so often and I’m sure the team would agree that this played a big part in building our morale for the weekend ahead.

The competition took place over 2 days, with all the kata events on Saturday as well as some of the Cadets and senior team Kumite events. The kata team were quite successful with John Georgas narrowly missing out on the bronze medal in the Cadet Boys kata, and Rhys Scott, Maki Kamada, Renee Caruso and Sarah Cayed all easily getting through their first rounds.

Unfortunately, none of our teams made it through to medal rounds. Both men’s teams losing in the first round, and the women’s team defeated in the 2nd round.

On Sunday, the rest of the team competed in their individual events.

Shaneel CHAND:
Shaneel fought Denmark first. He managed to come back with a sensational mawashi-geri to the head to equalise at 4-4 with him, although lost several points from penalties in the last 30 seconds and was not able to make another come back as the time ticked down. The final score was 4-7.

Kristina MAH: Kristina fought Germany first, easily getting through this round, 5-0. She then fought Denmark, and came out with another win, 4-0. The semi finals was against the Colombian, Lina Marcela Gomez, this was a tough fight, and Kristina pulled off a win of 6-2 to save her a spot for the finals later that day. In the finals, she fought the Croatian, and held out to take out the division with a 3-1 victory.

Matt TICKLE: Matt drew 2 all in his first fight against the Chilean in the Men’s Team event. Unfortunately though, his team lost their round on a count back. In his individual event, he had a BYE in his first round. He went into the second round eager for a fight, and easily defeated the Danish competitor 4 – 0 . In the 3rd round, Matt fought Hungary. The fight was close and even after the extended time, the score remained locked at 0-0. He lost by a flag decision.

The trip was incredibly fun and everyone had an amazing time with great memories to take away from it, as was predicted. With the Junior World Championships on the horizon, there wasn’t much time for celebration (even though the team managed to get through the night with some celebration ;)). After a hearty team dinner at our favourite restaurant in Copenhagen, Wagamama, some kicked on in the lobby of the hotel singing songs, and some even performed kata on the city streets, everything met with a lot of laughter and all in all a great note to end the week on.

It was a great trip, even though in some parts quite exhausting, new friendships were formed and old ones reinforced not only with the outstanding unity of the Aussie Team, but also on the international stage, as even the coaches and referees mentioned, the comments from other teams’ coaches and refs about our team spirit throughout the competition.

So now… it’s all eyes on Morocco…

Danish Karate Federation

The Australian Team will be attending the Copenhagen Open on the first weekend of October. The majority of the team will be departing Australia on Sunday the 27th September and the rest on Monday the 28th. The competition will host all division from Cadets to Seniors in kata and kumite and ALL the categories will take place and run to completion on Saturday 3 October.

As mentioned in past blog-posts, Shihan Barounis will be travelling with Matt Tickle (+84kg male kumite), Shaneel Chand (-75kg male kumite) and Kristina Mah (-61kg female kumite) who are competing from Miyagi Kan. Not to mention, our training partners and friends: Michael Pearn (-65kg male kumite) and Georgi Georgieff (+84kg male kumite)who are also competing as well as the rest of the Georgieff Family who are coming to be the Aussie cheer squad! Also, Con Papanikolau will be one of the referees at the competition. This will be Con’s first appearance as an international referee at a European competition.

Everyone is looking forward to a successful trip full of emotion and memorable experiences. News and results will be posted here as soon as they are available…
More information about the competition, and possibly up-to-date results are available at


Check out the promo video of the competition

From the Miyagi Kan camp we are proud of all the competitors this weekend for fighting their hearts out. We had a smaller contingent in the NSW State Team than usual, but of course, there were outstanding results and we only are only looking forward where so much more is on the edge of being achieved.
Results from the competition are as follows:

Nathan Economou: Gold (11 yrs Boys Kumite), Bronze (11-14 yrs Mixed Team Kumite)
Ihaka Nolan: Bronze (63-70kg, Cadet Male Kumite)
Jonnie Economou: Gold (+70kg, Cadet Male Kumite)
Eugene Orlov: Bronze (-52kg, Cadet Male Kumite)
Omar Nourredine: Bronze (-52kg, Cadet Male Kumite)
Arika Kanazawa: Bronze (48-53kg, Junior Female Kumite)
Affif Nourredine: Silver (55-61kg, Junior Male Kumite)

Seira Yahiro: Gold (-53kg, U21 yr Female Kumite), Gold (50-55kg Senior Female Kumite) Gold (U21yr Female Kata), Bronze (Senior Female Open Kumite)
Shaneel Chand: Silver (68-74kg Senior Male Kumite), Silver (65-70kg U21yr Male Kumite)
Tsuneari Yahiro: Gold (Senior Male Open Kumite)
Kristina Mah: Gold (55-61kg Senior Female Kumite), Silver (Senior Female Kata)
Matt Tickle: Silver (+84kg Senior Male Kumite)
Richard Flemming: Bronze (Men’s Veteran Kumite)

Senior Female Team Kumite (Seira Yahiro, Kristina Mah, Olivia Hale): GOLD
Senior Male Team Kumite (Georgi Georgieff, Matt Tickle, Todd Usher, Tsuneari Yahiro, Shaneel Chand): GOLD

The Junior National Team was announced this weekend at “The Dome” in Adelaide. Seira Yahiro was given the awesome responsibility of captaining the team that will compete at the Cadet and Junior WKF Championships in Rabat, Morocco in November later this year.
The Miyagi Kan contingent will consist of:
Seira Yahiro (-53kg under 21yr female kumite)
Shaneel Chand (-70kg under 21yr male kumte)
Arika Kanazawa (-51kg Junior female kumite)
and Shihan George Barounis as coach.
For the people who missed out on selection for this competition, just remember that you will only be stronger, hungrier, and smarter for the next round of National Team Selections. You will have your time and you should continue to work to achieve your goals.

The team for the Copenhagen Open was also re-announced. From Miyagi Kan, there will be:
Shaneel Chand (-74kg Senior male kumite)
Kristina Mah (55-61kg Senior female kumite)
Matt Tickle (+84kg Senior male kumite)
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will be attending this event and it could be pivotal for the future of karate in the Olympic Games.

(Thank you Petar Georgieff for some of these photos! You are a very reliable documentor!)