Filipino karate organization hopes sport returns to 2024 Olympics

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Joey Villar – Philstar.com

October 26, 2021 | 2:44 p.m.

MANILA, Philippines – Karate, a martial arts sport where the country has a chance to win a medal, could be reinstated in the calendar for the Paris 2024 Olympics.

Karate Pilipinas president Richard Lim said on Tuesday there was a silver lining for the sport to be put back on the Paris Games calendar after calls from French Olympic gold medalist Steven de Costa and other countries, including the Philippines, have materialized.

“They took out karate in Paris because they feel like makakakuha sila medalists in other sports,” Lim told the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) online forum.

“But they won a gold medal and France are trying to take it kaya, we still hope and pray matanggap ‘yun,” he added.

The sport finally appeared at the Tokyo Games last August after a long battle dating back to the 1970s.

But France has decided to pull the plug and replace it with surfing and sport climbing, which Paris organizers believe is more popular on social media despite the gold delivered by its own De Costa.

Although no Filipinos have qualified in Tokyo, the country has a world No. 2 ranked bet in the women’s -55 kilograms kumite division and is a strong Olympic contender – Fil-Japan Junna Tsukii.

“There is still hope, and we keep that hope. Now it’s up to the (French) government to decide, ”Lim said.

Meanwhile, the country has been training to participate in the world championships scheduled for November 16-21 in Dubai and the Asian Championships for December 19-22 in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

“This will be my first world championships so I’m excited,” said Jaime Lim, who will spearhead the national championships which included Tsukii, Joco Vasquez and Sarah Pangilinan.


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