The third stop of the 2019 Karate 1-Series A started in Montreal (Canada) on Friday with a thrilling first day of competition. Daniel Gaysinsky gave hosts plenty of reasons to celebrate with his qualification to the final while some of the biggest names of the sport demonstrated great form in Montreal.
After the first day of competition in Montreal, the organizing nation celebrated the qualification for the medal bouts of Daniel Gaysinsky and Haya Jumaa. While Jumaa will fight for bronze, the Canadian representative in Male Kumite +84kg made it to the title-deciding bout. Gaysinsky upset Simone Marino of Italy in semi-finals 5-4 and will clash for his first medal in international competitions since his bronze at the Pan American Championships last year. His rival in the final is Turkey’s Alparslan Yamanoglu who edged Iran’s Sajad Ganzjadeh in semi-finals 1-0.
Front-runners left their mark on the first day of action as some of the top-placed karatekas succeeded in Montreal. Ugur Aktas of Turkey continue showing excellent level; after taking gold in the Karate 1-Premier League Shanghai barely two weeks ago, the current Grand Winner qualified for his sixth final this year. The mighty competitor from Turkey defeated France’s Farouk Abdesselem in semi-finals 5-3 and will meet Italy’s Michele Martina in the final. The Italian former European champion beat Kazakhstan’s Igor Chikhmarev in semi-finals 2-1.
World champion Jovana Prekovic of Serbia used her World-title-holder status to qualify for the final in Female Kumite-61kg. Ahead of her participation in the European Games next week, the Serbian karateka made it to her first final of the season following a 3-0 victory over local hopeful Haya Jumaa. The other side of the tatami in the final will be taken by Alexandra Grande of Peru. The current Pan American Championships bronze medallist defeated China’s Xiaoyan Yin by “Hantei” or decision in semi-finals.
Meanwhile, current World Championships runner-up Jana Bitsch of Germany reached his first final this year after showing top form and upsetting Croatia’s Alesandra Hasani in semi-finals 5-0. The other finalist in Female Kumite -55kg is Sabina Zakharova of Kazakhstan who also made it to her first final of the season following a 4-0 victory in semi-finals over Chinese Taipei Tzu-Yun Wen.
The Male Kata competition will see an All-Japan final bout since Kazumasa Moto and Kakeru Nishiyama will clash for gold in Montreal. Moto topped the pool with his performance of “Unsu” and a score of 25.48 while Nishiyama dominated the pool with “Papuren” kata and a score of 26.42.
The final of Female Kumite -50kg will have Ayaka Tadano of Japan clashing against Ranran Li of China. The Japanese karateka surprised Grand Winner Serap Ozcelik of Turkey 2-0 in semi-finals while the Chinese representative defeated Junna Tsukii of Philippines 4-3 in semi-finals.