Strong Swedish EC Team ready!

v-yisGagSwedish Karate Kyokushinkai, known for long tradition and well known profiles. Sweden have manage to raise their total Karate Kyokushinkai level through long and hard work – the Kyokushin way. We could say a lot about this, but we will focus on this years EC Team, because we believe that it is one of the strongest in a very long time!

(pictures in the article by Louise Helmfrid, MICHAEL ERICHSEN and prokyokushin

swedenSweden brings in to this European Championship a historic big team with (up to now) 22 athletes. Juniors and seniors, Kumite as well as Kata. The most of you know, but taking a closer look at these athletes gives us a reminder of the all round level Sweden possesses. Kata. Sweden have been on the podium several times in the EC Kata category. Last year at the latest, with a strong 2nd place by Chalita Andersson. Andersson being a national team member since 2011 (Junior) has been at the podium before, with a U22 gold in Lithuania 2014, the main goal is clear : European Champion for seniors.

alicia-jpg⇐Alicia Edin has been of of the profiles in the team, and with a tournament history that reaches over 10 years, her routine and level can only be seen – not describes.  EC 2nd place in Poland 2015, and 3rd place in EC Georgia in 2016, at the latest. Also in the men division Sweden got two competitors, Andreas Tampe and Adam Rogård. Even at their high level, the EC medals are still missing, but no doubt that they are closing in as we can see of their score and medals in other open tournaments.

Kumite will take the most of the focus for the most of the countries. This year Sweden have a really strong team, almost filled all places in the seniors categories, women as well as men. In the Kumite Sweden do have many EC medals, seniors, U22 and Juniors. The team of 2017 do also have a nice mix of mature routine and up and coming younger fighters. Several of the fighters have all ready taken medals in the European Championship.

GerdaPIn the -55 kg category for seniors women, Gerda Pekarskaite – (we think this is EC debut in the senior division) Pekarskaite has all ready made some very strong impressions popping in to the senior division. Maybe many remember her fight against European top fighter Zsofia Szabo in Austrian Open final 2015, giving 100%,  Pekarskaite took the fight in to 2 extensions before loosing on flags. This was a very strong fight, and  Pekarskaite was awarded The spirit award – Szabo was on her side awarded best women fighter..

c_w_bo11In the -60 kg category, to fighters with a lot of experience and merits in the bag. Cecilia Wallin, high pace lightweight fighter with a good tournament record all ready in the U22. Manage to reach the podium three times in the EC U22 Championship, before she moved on in to the “full senior” division. Wallin continued to impress, and as a national team member she have won tournaments as Dutch Open, Swedish Open Danish Open, French Open to name some.  But in 2014 she entered the EC podium (3rd place) in the middleweight, and repeated that the year after – will this time be the third?

1383671_10151710755067602_2067037064_nThe second fighter in the -60 kg category is Dina Kljajic. At first look the merits maybe don`t seems so impressive, considerate that it is less EC experience. But the experience is all inn, and Kljajic has several tournaments with good performance. But the merits in one side of the case the spirit – a another one. Kljajic known for a very strong will to win combine with ruthless strong lowkicks. Have notable wins from Austrian Open, Kyokushin Open, been Swedish champion and more.

sanneIn the last category, Sanne Larsson. Larsson came in to the senior category, and challenged established athletes there immediately. Winning the Swedish Championship in 2014 as a result of that. But the level of Larsson was pointed out before that, a she reached the final in the EC for junior the year before. And winning her first Internationale (IKK Open) title right before the Swedish Championship  Taking the 2nd place in EC juniors in 2013, and repeated this in 2014. Won the Scottish Open last year (2016) in a very convincing way. Besides this Larsson have a very active tournament schedule, and will always be ready to go.

diamond_1The other competitor in the +60 kg category, Sara Hägge. Hägge has been i the game for some time, and have routine and skills to meet the best on the mat. 3rd place in the EC last year 2016, and this was up to a certain point expected, as all could see that Hägge was closing the gap to the best. Winner of Swedish, Danish Open and The 20th Branka Memorial Bosnjaka, 2nd in British Open, Diamond Cup 2016 and in 2014 – where she also received best technique award. Have met all the best, and will be a force to reckon with.

I the men`s category, there are several strong profiles and well known for the Kyokushin family. We will pick up from the lowest weight category. It is also a tough that this years Swedish team naturally will be larger than usually, being neighbor to the organizing country, Denmark.

Milad-1024x681-65 kg Ziyafatalla (milad) Samizada and Christofer Sjölund. Both fighters are competent lightweight fighters with eminent skills and experience. Both have strong merits, and a factor will be that the -65 kg category seems Swedish Open_20120915_0218 (2)to suite them well. Both have several nationals victories, and met top level. Ziyafatalla (milad) Samizada would be the one with the favorite of the two, with his EC merits as a junior. Also had a very successful 2016 with Swedish Open title (where Coffe Sjölund ended 3rd) and U22 EC Champion and for best technique – to name his biggest victories. -don`t blink, you will miss the flash!

stefan-75 kg Stefan Chervenkov and Jimmie Collin. We will naturally turn a little towards Jimmie Collin in the Swedish team. If we should compare to other teams/sports he would be the captain. Being the supreme Swedish fighter for many years, and with “countless” merits and fights. But we think that his merits would be one thing, his appearance through all years even J_Collin-more important. Giving the signal that if I can – you can. And e all know he can! It will be a new setting with the -75 kg as well, the old -80 category has been split up, and some moved to -85 kg and some to -75. Chervenkov, very technical clean fighter, 2nd in the Swedish Open 2016 and Danish Open Champion in 2013. Despite his young age, his style of fighting is clean and economic. He will always be in his best position, knowing his distance well and choice of right technique at the right time.

erik-85 kg Erik Hägge and Rasmus Bergström. This category do have some very strong profiles, Ilas, Gudauskas, Mammadov, Wolny to name some of the top fighters. Bergström would be the most merited among the two Swedish fighters, and had a good 2016 with notable wins. Swedish Open, Branka Memorial, both two well respected tournaments. Also in the “bag” Bergström brings rasmuswith him a 2nd place in the U22 EC 2014, and represented Sweden in the 11th World Championship in 2015. Technical forward fighting with a aim for quick finish will be expected  Erik Hägge, new in the national team setting, but of course experienced fighter as well. Hägge has been moving through the weight divisions the late years, getting stronger all the way. 2nd place in the Danish Open 2015, 1st place Scottish Open 2015 – lightweight, moving up to the middleweight and advancing in the Swedish Open 2016. Tough spirited fighting will Hägge bring to the table.

fredrikIn the heaviest category +85 kg Fredrik Johansson and Simon Pålsson. Both represented Sweden in the European Championship several times before. Both also been fighting for the Swedish team in the World Championship – where the criteria are even higher. Johannsson has been fighting for several years, and have good experience. Has 2.2been the Swedish Champion, winner of Branko Bosnjak Memorial 2015 and Scottish Open same year. Spirited fighting with a skill to grow bigger longer the fight goes. Pålsson would always bee a challenge to meet on the mat. Big in size, good damage in the techniques. Pålsson has been on the mat with the best, and has the capability to reach to advance in the EC – even if you will win, it will cost you. 1st Scottish Open 2014,1st Spanish Open 2012 and 2nd Branko Bosnjaka 2012  as some of his merits.

2011_sc (18) – KopiThe Swedish team are combined from many strong dojo`s in Sweden. A nations with very good Kyokushin traditions, and of course with some big Kyokushin profiles. The hard work that has been done in the Dojos is of great value. But to form a national team will also be of great matter. To coordinate activity, and to follow up the constant development av fighting, to be on  “top of all”  not only things but also each of the team member. The Swedish Team coach, Magnus Hanssen is very successful trainer, with a highly skilled level. The level he possesses brings him to many of the strongest nations in Europe as a guest instructor. Hungary, Poland, Romania to set thing in perspective.

The junior team are also very strong merited and skilled. The junior team are lead by Torbjörn Helmfrid – still active as a “old master” category fighter. Bringing the EC team together from whole Sweden, Mirjam Björklund, Elvira Gummesson, Lisa Linder, Johan Strömer and Pontus Göthe. The level among them are very good, and besides several Internationale titles (a small excerpt) Lisa Linder – 1st Dream Cup 2016, 2nd EC 2016, Elvira Gummesson – 2nd EC U16 2015, Mirjam Björklund – 1st Kyokushin Open 2016, Johan Strömer – Waterpoort Holland 2nd, Best fighter award Teen Challenge Norway, Pontus Göthe – BS Cup 2016 Champion, 1st Belgian Open 2016.tobbe