Team Ireland was well represented at the now famous Yokoso Open in Amsterdam, Holland this weekend just gone (7th-8th April 2017). KBI clubs from Irish Martial Arts Academy, Red Star, Spartan, BBAA & BMAClondalkin/Hurricane MA fielded strong athletes in the forms, continuous & points fighting categories leaving their mark with an overall tally of 12 gold, 12 silver and 9 bronze medals for Ireland with the result leaving them 6th on the overall medal table.
Red Star fighters were on fire from the start with 3 first places with only 2 competitors fielded. National light contact coach Jon Mackey was on the scene with his own renowned Red Star team proving that Ireland are one of the strongest nations in light contact fighting.
Hurricane’s Jay Daniels coached by Bma Clondalkin’s Ilija Salerno was in tip top shape gearing up for the national championships in a fortnight. Entering the -69kg & -74kg point fighting categories, he took on strong opposition and finishing with one gold and a silver medal proving his ready to take on the coveted KBI national title at the end of the month (round 1 30th april).
Spartan Academy fielded strong junior and seniors in forms and point fighting at the event and finished the weekend with a brilliant 3 silver and 4 bronze medals to help Team Ireland reached the top 6.
Irish Martial Arts Academy under head coach Eamon Lawlor fielded the biggest squad from Ireland. His competitors took over the musical forms division and flooded the podium in the boys cadets divisions. The Dundalk based outfit finished wit a whopping 5 gold, 6 silver and 3 bronze medals. An outstanding achievement by the growing Academy. IMAA have also just launched a new Academy based in Kilkenny.
Last but not least young Billy McLawrence from Waterford based club BBA was the star of the tournament and Team Ireland by taking first place in the Junior Forms Grand Championship and along with it 3 gold & 2 silver medals to his name and his club while competing solo! His form in the night time show was a total show stopper! Credit due to the young competitor and his parents who constantly travel to compete against the best out there.
A big mention to Danny Slevin/Brannmanndan who once again provided live streaming of the event and was on the scene taping all the top bouts of the two day event.