Results and pics - 2008 VJKC
Another great Victorian Junior Kendo Championships today. The standard gets better every year.
This year we had two divisions, 14 & under and 16 & under. Unfortunately only three Victorian dojo were represented, Nanseikan (of course!), Fudoshin and Ballarat.
Firstly thanks to the shinpan who came along today: Gary Oliver, Khay-Lin Teoh sensei, Richard Ward, Jason Widdy and Andrew Lam. Thanks also to all the parents for bringing their boys (and they were all boys this year, more girl-kendoka needed!) as well as supporting their kendo throughout the year. Last but not least, thanks to Tony of UMKC, who took all the fantastic photos below. All pics are (c) Tony Shearer.
Straight off the 14 & under matches were high quality. Newcomer Yuichiro Sato of Fudoshin won his first match in his first ever taikai against Thomas Goh, also of Fudoshin.
Poor Thomas didn't fare any better in his next match against our own Mr Weber. Geoffrey won with two very nice men-uchi.
Then, about the time evryone was thinking "Rob, you've got about 10 secs to pull something out," lo and behold Rob scores with a beautiful men. You can really see in this photo how much ground Rob can cover with his uchikomiashi!
Absolutely no doubt in the judges mind on that one. The match went into encho and Geoffrey replied with another men, taking the match. Next up was Rob against Yuichiro Sato. Rob was still firing in spite of his loss to Geoffrey, and he took the match, and the silver medal, from Yuichiro with another beautiful men-uchi. But it was Geoffrey who won the gold, with his two wins, both by two points.
After a brief interlude...
...it was on with the 16 & unders. Geoffrey, as winner of the 14 & under, also took up a place in this more experienced field. Straight away, Thomas Goh's big brother Tristan showed he was not to be trifled with by accounting for Nanseikan's Richard with men and kote points. I think Richard was a bit taken by surprise. Jenny Kelso who was timekeeping for us said that Tristan's first men came only four seconds after hajime! If it's any consolation Richard, the pic below shows that it wasn't all one-way. The match was much closer than the score-line suggests.
Next up was Tristan versus Andre Bricknell of Ballarat, and the tables were turned somewhat, with Andre dominating by scoring two emphatic men-uchi. Apart from being a lot taller than last year, Andre impressed with his straight form and excellent kime, that quality that leaves no doubt that you meant to do what you just did.
Andre's next opponent was Richard, and Richard was on the receiving end of Bricknell's kime, allowing Andre to score two men on him. Unfortunately for Richard, the technique below did not work as well for him as worked for Teramoto in the 2007 All-Japans...
Next pool first up was Geoffrey against Shaun Hearn of Ballarat: a draw with a men for Geoffrey and kote for Shaun.
Final pool match was between Chris and Ballarat compadre Shaun. Chris showed he meant business with two men-uchi.
But suddenly Andre scored with a lovely men. Chris didn't muck around, answering very soon after with a men of his own. One all! Would it drag out? Who would break through? The match was intense, but clean and both showed exemplary kendo for their level. It didn't take long for Andre find the opening and score the winning men.
Well done to Geoffrey and Robert for their success. And ganbatte kudasai to Richard. You may not think so at the moment, but you have learned a lot from today's defeats.
The final results were:
14 & under
1st - Geoffrey Weber (Nanseikan)
2nd - Robert Kelso (Nanseikan)
3rd - Yuichiro Sato (Fudoshin)
16 & under
1st - Andre Bricknell (Ballarat)
2nd - Chris Brown (Ballarat)
3rd - Tristan Goh (Fudoshin)
See you all next year!