Last Monday, the 23rd of November, Erica and I competed in the Sainokuni East Friendship Competition, otherwise known as the Tobu Taikai. This competition is organized by Takamasa Arakawa Sensei and Shiramizu, and is a 'friendship' competition because it isn't a selection for another, higher level tournament; it is just a chance to get competition experience. Held at the Kuki City Sports Hall, about 600 children and adults entered.
I didn't do so well in kumite, losing my first round. I was nervous and didn't fully commit to my attacks, so they were too short and obvious. At the end of the time the points were 2-2, so we went into encho-sen. My opponent and I both punched at the same time, but because she initiated it, she got the point and won the match.
Kuki City Sports Hall set up with eight courts for the competition
There were five women in my kata division (Dan Grade Women). In the first two rounds I did Chinto, and both times managed to mess up the last spin and kick, so you can imagine my surprise when I won those rounds. My opponents and I performed our kata at the same time so I didn't see how they did. In the finals I did Kushanku and, to my even greater surprise, I won again. So for the first time ever I won a gold medal in kata.
Erica won her kumite division as well and she'll be telling you about that soon.
Erica and I with our medals