DJC @ Kazoku Red & Yellow Belt Rumble
The competitions are coming thick and fast now at this time of the year. This time the DJC Judoka nipped across to Cornwall to compete in the Kazoku Red and Yellow Belt Rumble in Truro. On this occasion it was the first time that the group had ventured out without the older experienced First Generation of players. It was time for the next group of red and yellow belts to step up and take centre stage, and they certainly did!
Although still a bit breezy, the drive to Cornwall was pleasant compared to Saturday’s weather. The start was slow with players arriving in drips and drabs, but soon the small cozy town hall was crammed with players, coaches, staff and family. Tea, coffee, bacon and egg baps and treats were on tap for an exciting day ahead.
To aid rotation to account for the tight environment, the organisers arranged for medals to be presented after 2 consecutive groups. The first two groups included the Electric Erin, the smallest boy with the biggest heart, Alex.
First Alex was up and competing in two higher groups, one of which was a 12 year old (Alex is 9)! The first saw Alex dominate and go three scores and a shido up before the ippon throw for the win. Next was a tough bruising encounter. First there was an awkward looking bend of the knee then being literally strangled by his opponent’s legs. The match was stopped briefly to evade injury before reconvening from the hold. Once it started there was a thriller see-saw as the players switched holds. The 12 year old scored a wizari in the dying seconds, but Alex held his opponent down for the final dozen or so seconds and was award a wizari to draw the contest. The golden score rematch was over in seconds as Alex grabbed his arm and twisted with full commitment to throw the player on his back and earn the win and first Golds for DJC.
Electric Erin was in fantastic form. Clearly working on uchi mata and determined to make it stick as she tried and tried again as she dominated and beat her first opponent. The second match started similarly, but Erin started to switch it up with other techniques and some ground work before scoring another win and winning a fantastic Gold medal.
Next up was The Smiling Assassin Pheobe with debutant Izzy in the same group, a determined Daisy and the Gentlemen’s Warrior Will.
Pheobe was up first with great technical work, dominating her opponent and then created the epicentre of an earthquake as she slammed her foe onto the ground, leaving even the table in shock and amazement. More of the same in her next contest, switching between techniques and landing her opponent flat on her back for another ippon throw. Meanwhile Izzy was warming into the day, with great endeavour she narrowly lost her first contest, but then won her next to set up a nicely poised contest with Pheobe. Pheobe was too strong and experienced for young Izzy, who can be proud of her debut Silver, whilst Pheobe swept everyone aside for G-O-L-D.
Daisy scorned a serious and determined look and took to the mat ready to fight. Whilst persistently trying to hook and sweep her opponent to the mat it would end in a frustrating draw. Daisy unfortunately lost her next contest, but that served to put fire in her belly for the next contest. The hard fought contest nearly went all the way for the count, but in the dying seconds Daisy scored the win and a great Silver medal.
Will was in a fighting mood, but went down to a loss despite great determination. His second fight was a different matter. This time he dominated and beat his opponent. Ever the gentleman, Will went to shake his opponent’s hand, only for it to not be well received and some un-sportsman and un-judo like behaviour from his opponent. Regardless, the run of results meant that Will earned a nice shinny Gold medal.
The action was not yet over, there was Maria with Flo, Louis, Allan with Oliver, Angus, Izzy and Ethan all up next!
Allan and Oliver shared the same group with Oliver kicking things off. What is with the players today? Even Oliver was in a serious mood. Olly held on for his life to win his first contest. Allan, in the corresponding contest would destroy his first opponent, with a rib crushing slam in 3 seconds, and tried to beat his 3 second record but failed and had the match won in mire 5 seconds! He was on fired. Olly was at a big disadvantage against his next, and 6th Mon opponent and could not match his previous win. Next it was Allan v Oliver, but Allan was in confident mood and took his third win to set up the final match for the gold. Beforehand Olly would get his second win of the day with a hold down, whilst at the same time having a good look around at his adoring fans, who were screaming for him to get his head down….he obliged and earned himself a bronze medal. Allan was next up aiming for gold. In an evenly fought contest Allan was being held down and so nearly got his opponents leg hooked, just as the 20 second buzzer sounded argh so close! But a fantastic and well-earned silver medal.
Maria and Flo were next. Maria starting in wonderful athletic form, dominating her opponents and with great throws scored ippons in her first two contest, with the second match over 5 seconds. Meanwhile Flo was also in great form and moving her opponents around well. She won her first contest with a hold down and deservedly got the referees decision for the win the second fight. Maria and Flo were to contest. Maria was in unstoppable form and would throw Flo for ippon for the gold, and Flo with an awesome silver.
The unassuming Louis graced the mat with purpose and had a best-of-three contest. In hard fought matches, the combatants utilised most of the mat and nearly extended the arena to the walls. Louis bettered his opponent in the two only matches and achieved a great gold medal!
Angus competed with great enthusiasm. Even having time to high five his coach. He contested his matches well against more experience players and achieved a great bronze medal.
Izzy, competing against players in separate categories fought brilliantly. Despite doing most of the work, her first match went to a judge’s decision when her opponent scored a match leveling wizari in the dying seconds. Unfortunately the decision did not go Izzy’s way. In the next match there was no way it was going to a judge’s decision as she dominated and won by ippon and won a gold medal in her category.
Ethan was our final player for the day. His first contest was against a bigger, more experienced and higher graded Judoka, and unfortunately lost. He would make up for this in his second match, dominating and holding down his opponent and winning a great silver medal.
It was a great day out for the DJC Judoka. There were some great fights and some awesome judo on display. The supporters were at their usual vocal best, and the players were well supported by coaches Ross and Ros. The tally for the day was 9 Gold, 5 Silver and 2 Bronze.