Nigeria’s Karatekas will not compete at the 2018 African Junior and Senior Championships in Kigali, Rwanda, aclsports.com reports.
The 17th edition of the Union of African Karate (UFAK) serves as a qualifier for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics kicks off from 31st August 31 to 2nd September, 2018.
Fourteen athletes consisting of National Champions Hope Adele, Aderonke Ogunsanwo, Ujunwa Nwankwo, Ogene Ifeanyi and four Africa Games athletes could not make it to Rwanda due to unavailability of funds.
An athlete said, “Unfortunately, our athletes could not make the trip. The Technical Director and some board members really tried their best to secure funds but all their efforts did not yield positive response”.
“Up till now we are still waiting if anything can still happen because the tournament will feature junior and senior”.
Another athlete told www.aclsports.com that they have been assured of attending the 2018 World Championships in Madrid, Spain.
“It’s painful not to be in this year’s African Championships after putting extra efforts, but the Federation members told us we’ll be in Madrid, Spain in November for the 2018 World Karate Senior Championships”, he said
The UFAK competition will be both in the Kata and Kumite for those between 14-19 years and the seniors both in the male and female categories.
The 16th edition of the UFAK Africa karate competition was hosted in Yaoundé capital Cameroon and Tunisia are the current holders having topped the medal rankings with 19 medals last year including 7 gold, 5 silver and 7 bronze.
Egypt and host Cameroon finished second and third respectively with 6 and 4 gold medals.