By John Tuerijama
NAMIBIAN kickboxers have done the country proud at the Battle of Atlanta World Karate Championship, held in the United States of America (USA) earlier this month.
Namibia Kickboxing Federation (NKF) President, Anita de Klerk, said the trio of Julian Muller, Delano Muller and Lesley !Hoabeb has successfully brought home three world medals from the tournament.
She said the Namibian team was joined by their South African counterparts in Atlanta, as part of the Ring Contact Fighting Arts International (RCFAI) contingent that participated at the event. The Battle of Atlanta World Karate Championship is a major global tournament, which includes different forms of weapons, plenty of fighting divisions, a traditional challenge and much more. Over the years, the event has been home to some of the greatest fighters in the world, from Chuck Norris to Evander Holyfield, as well as Don Wilson, Bill Superfoot Wallace, Joe Lewis, Jeff Smith and Jean Claude Van Damme. The three Namibians each won first place in their respective categories, with Muller beating Remert van Zyl in the light middleweight category.
Hoaeb defeated Johannes Gottwald from Germany in the light welterweight category, while Delano Muller beat Daniel Cuervo from United States in his division. De Klerk said the Namibian team delivered outstanding performances and will be fighting in an international event that takes place in Walvis Bay later this year.
She said the three medallists will be involved in title fights, with contenders from Angola, South Africa, the United States, Reunion, Zimbabwe and Germany, having already confirmed their participation at the tournament. “This will be a milestone for Namibian kickboxing, as it will be the first-ever tournament of its kind (taking place in Walvis Bay). The trio made a huge impact at the Battle of Atlanta and next year the tournament will celebrate its 50th anniversary,” De Klerk said.
She said the Namibian team have expressed their joy and gratitude towards the World President of the RCFAI, Master Joe Viljoen, and the Namibian nation, for the support and opportunities they have been given. She said the Namibians had excelled and that the Battle of Atlanta had been an awesome event and a wonderful experience.
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