These Cape Flats karate kids just got the opportunity of their young lives – the chance to represent their country in Europe and kick their way to fame.
The six children from Hanover Park have been selected to
represent South Africa at the fifth Junior World Tournament in Bulgaria in December.
While the group of medal-winning fighters are working hard for the competition, they might not set foot in Europe as they don’t have enough money to fund the trip.
Under the watchful eye of Sensei Deen Daniels, the group trains every day of the week at the Shinkyokushin Dojo at Crystal High School in Hanover Park.
“Saturday night we train at my house for two hours,” Deen says.
Shinkyokushin Dojo, started in 2002 and has 40 young fighters.
Deen says the dojo regularly competes at national and international levels.
In September, 16 of the students took part in a national selection tournament at the Bellville Velodrome.
“Six were chosen to represent South Africa after coming first and second in their weight categories,” Deen says proudly.
But each fighter has to come up with R15 000 for flights and accommodation in Bulgaria.
Seventeen-year-old Lee Hicks is training extra hard.
He says: “Being selected for the competition was a big achievement for me but I want to come home with a first place medal.”
Deen has asked for the public and business owners to assist his students.
“We just need the financial support, it is extremely taxing on the parents. I just think that the onus should not be on them alone, especially not if you are representing South Africa.”
* Anyone who wants to help can contact 082 466 0690.