Competitors from all the North Island will converge on Tauranga this weekend for the Central North Island Karate Championships.
Competitors from Auckland to Wellington are taking part in the event and CNI Chairperson Joseph McGregor says he is expecting a big turnout for the competition at the Queen Elizabeth Youth Centre on Sunday.
“We are getting about 150 players this year, which isn’t bad.”
Joseph says the competition will showcase some great skills, with top athletes competing at the Bay of Plenty event.
“Andrea Anacan from Auckland is currently the highest ranked Oceania player and she is competing at this tournament as part as her campaign to get to the Olympics next year.”
Joseph says other competitors to look out for are Isabellah McGregor and Sam Crawford, who are aiming to be selected in the Junior World Championships team later on in the year.
Tauranga have hosted the Central North Island event for the past three years, which Joe says has been a privilege.
“It’s a fantastic chance to showcase the best that the North Island has to offer really in terms of karate competitions.
“It’s probably one of the biggest competitions in New Zealand.”
Joe says he has seen a significant improvement since Tauranga hosted the event three years ago.
“There’s been an increase in both participation and an increase in skill sets, the standard is getting higher and higher every year which is brilliant.”
There is no entry fee for the event and Joe encourages members of the public to come along and watch.
“The public will find it quite exciting, and it will certainly be different to their expectations of a major karate competition.”