By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Azerbaijani karatekas have set a record for the number of awards won in one competition.
Thus, the Azerbaijani sportsmen won over 200 medals at the 11th European Shotokan Karate Championships held in Skopje, North Macedonia held on November 1-3. As many as 116 karatekas who were representing Azerbaijan, won a total of 202 medals, of which 72 were gold, 53 silver and 77 bronze.
The team secured the first place in the medal standings of the championship.
The championship was held in three disciplines: Shobu Ippon, Shobu Sanbon and "WKF-Kumite, as well as in various age categories. Moreover, karatekas who competed in the Shobu Ippon discipline also had the right to participate in Shobu Sanbon.
Over the past years, Azerbaijani karate athletes been the winners of a number of prestigious international tournaments, European and World Championships.
Azerbaijan boasts with the number of its world-known karatekas. Among them are five-time World Champion, and eleven-time European Champion Rafael Agayev, World Champions Israfil Shirinov, Aykhan Mamayev, Europe Champions Parviz Abdulkarimov, Jeyhun Aghasiyev, Rustam Madatov, Fayyaz Ildirimzade, Niyazi Aliyev and Asiman Gurbanli, bronze medalists of European Championship Amal Atayev, Yusif Jafarov, Shahin Atamov, Rashad Huseynov and Ilaha Gasımova are member of the national team.
The National Karate Federation of Azerbaijan, founded in 1994, became a full member of the World Karate Federation in 1997. WKF is the largest and most powerful karate organization in the world, comprising 183 countries and more than 50 million members. In 1996, the National Karate Federation joined the European Karate Federation (EKF).
WKF is the only karate federation recognized by the International Olympic Committee, whose main objective is to combine the basic style of karate under the general rules of the competition and enter into the program of the Olympic Games.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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