Karate still close to the hearts of Meghalayas

Dino Rensselaer

Shillong, May 5: With around 2,500 athletes competing in 19 sports, the fourth edition of the Meghalaya Games saw the largest participation to date. Despite a few hiccups before the start, the Olympics for the state’s future stars have so far been smooth sailing, giving them a platform to showcase their skills and create a team that represents Meghalaya at the national level. Chance.
One sport that has benefited after a two-year suspension is karate, according to officials.
Contact sports also attracted the most karate athletes this year, with 244, a figure that far surpassed the previous edition. That’s because at this year’s Meghalaya Games, participants in the sport spanned four categories — junior, junior, cadet and advanced, spanning 32 subcategories — compared with only the advanced category last time around.
Speaking of the positive development, Secretary of the All Meghalaya Karate Association (AMKA) Ksan Kupar Warjri said that despite the increasing number of karate athletes, no area of ​​Garo Hills is represented. All 244 participants currently represent East Kathy, West Kathy, South West Kathy, East East Kathy, East Jain and West Jain regions.
“Karate is generally Shillong-centric in the state. Karate is a technical game that requires a coach or mentor, unlike other sports disciplines where athletes can practice on their own. Currently, we have only DamangSyngkon and Linza Fenny Syiem on the board of directors. Two professional coaches, both of whom have been given new positions. This leaves both coaching benches empty.
“We do have some other qualified coaches but it is a challenge to send them to Mount Garo to train youngsters without any incentives. If some arrangements are made to hire at least one contract coach, that would be a big deal Help because we can send some of our association’s coaches to parts of the Garo Hills area,” Warjri said.
While there are no individuals representing any area of ​​the Garo Hills area in the ongoing competition, there are several Garo participants representing the Khasi Hills or Jaintia Hills areas.
Meghalaya has produced many karate superstars, including Linza, the former champion of the 7th Junior Shoto World Cup Karate Championships in Paris in 1998, as well as South Asian Games gold medalist Damang and South Asian Games silver medalist Banshan Lang Kharumnuid .
Recently, local girl Wandahunshisha Mawblei, assisted by coach Donboklang Lyngdoh, won the women’s cadet individual hand 54kg after beating Sri Lanka at the 5th Youth, U-21 and Senior South Asian Karate Championships 2019 in Dhaka, Bangladesh level gold medal.
“We have just started training and hope to produce more stars in the near future. There is a lot of potential talent in our cohort of youngsters and hopefully they will one day be able to compete in the senior nationals,” Warjri added.
The AMKA secretary praised the government for turning the Meghalaya Games into an annual event, saying it would be a solid exposure platform to help young karate athletes compete more frequently.
However, Harum Nuid, who is currently one of the referees of the karate competition, is not entirely satisfied with the quality of the skills of the young karate athletes, which he blames on the long break caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, Kharumnuid is optimistic that over the next year, with proper training, it should improve.
He further added that coaches desperately needed to travel abroad as part of the exposure tour, explaining that such travel would help build coaches’ ability to provide young people with more intensive training and strategies.
“Our instructors almost never leave the state or country for any exposure trips, which is a major disadvantage. For our students, we need to revamp our training facilities by purchasing proper fitness equipment. The modern form of karate is all about speed So having the proper gym equipment to regulate their physical stamina and stamina will make a huge difference,” he signed.
The fervent enthusiasm and support from parents and fans of young karate fighters proves that while many other contact or combat sports are gaining popularity, karate is and will always be in the hearts of Meghalayas.

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