THE national karate team copped six awards at the fifth annual Caribbean Karate Championships in Dominican Republic. The event was held from August 15 to 18 at Club Mauricio Baez in Villa Juana, Santo Domingo and a total of 13 national teams participated –TT, Jamaica, St Lucia, Barbados, Cayman Islands, Venezuela, Martinique, Mexico, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Haiti, Curacao, Dominican Republic.
An eight-member team was sent to represent TT. Michelle Lue Fatt copped TT's first medal, on Thursday, after placing third in the female kata of the 14-15 age group.
On Friday, Lue Fatt also placed third in the female junior 54kg kumite, while her sister Rochelle Lue Fatt copped silver, placing second in the 47kg junior female kumite.
Nathan Griffith placed third, on Saturday, in the men's 67kg category, while team captain Shiva Sookdeo also placed third in the men's 84kg category after winning two fights and losing one. Sookdeo further teamed up with Jyri Spycer and Keiden Joseph for the adult team kumite to eliminate team Curacao and earn bronze in the event.
Sookdeo has been involved in karate for approximately 25 years. Speaking with Newsday, he said, "I think we did very well. Dominican Republic are known for some of the most aggressive fighters in the region and I think our fighters did extremely well and this tournament was the largest since inception."
He said he is very proud having been a part of the team, adding that the Caribbean has a lot of high quality fighters. He said team TT will continue moving forward.
Michelle Lue Fatt
Rochelle Lue Fatt
David Skinner Ballantyne
Shiva Sookdeo (Cap)