Italy beckons for rising England karate star

Year 7 pupil Yusuf Karim heads off to Italy to represent England at karate this week. 

Yusuf will compete in the Karate European Championships 2016 in Montichiari, having already taken a medal for his country at the World Championships in Dublin earlier in the year.

Yusuf won silver in the Team Kata category in Ireland and just missed bronze in the Individual category – a performance which placed him fourth among some 90 competitors from all over the world.

""After starting in the sport four years ago, Yusuf moved to the England Shotokan Karate Federation around 18 months ago and was initially selected to take part in local competitions. Then at the Welsh Open last year he won gold and silver medals. At this year’s Polish Open 2016, held in Szczezin, he won the Team Kata gold medal and Individual Kata gold medal against opposition from Polish, Czech and Romanian competitors. And recently at the UK Open, he took the Team Kata bronze (Open category) and Individual Kata Silver (11-13 years).

Yusuf follows a training regime, training at different dojos to benefit from working with different squad members. He routinely travels from his home in East London to Lewisham in South London for three hours of squad training every Saturday and trains twice a week for two hours after school in Forest Gate. Sundays see him travelling as far as afield as Sheffield, Birmingham and Wales for UK-wide competitions. And in the run-up to the World Union of Karate-Do Federation’s (WUKF) World Championships in Dublin, he and his family made the trip to training almost every day.