Once again the EC are up on the schedule, and as all know, the EC are a qualifying tournament to the World Championship in 2022. Deadline for booking (hotel,travel) registration, must of course be in good time in relation to the event itself – one have to see this as a big challenge. Some countries – as we speak, can not even come their Dojo’s to train, due to the Covid-19 restrictions set by the authorities.We are filled with enthusiasm – but also many questions.
As mention, this EC will send the top fighters to the World Championship in weight categories in 2022, Poland. Therefore, it is really a lot at stake for those involved. But who is involved this EC? Optimism is spreading as the vaccine for covid-19 has come into play. -but on the other hand, the mutated versions of covid-19 set many nations back significantly, and into very strict regulations set by the authorities.
How to realistically prepare for a EC, when you are not allowed to leave your house?
There are also some different restrictions from one nation to another, related to how the government respects full contact karate as a sport. You can see that popular sports are allowed to hold their training and matches, while others are not even allowed to meet.
The organizer will have specific information by March and will be able to provide the European Karate Organization and the participating countries with accurate information.
Georgia organizer proven worthy
In the organizer part, Georgia has previously proved very capable of holding championships of significant sizes. Being the host of the European Championship in 2014, made Georgia organize the EC deepest in the East direction, only Azerbaijan, Baku goes a little further in that direction.
The level of the fighters from Georgia are well known. Only in a couple occasions Georgia have missed the EC podium – and that in a 20 years perspective. This include several European champions as well. Since this is a World championship qualifying tournament, we can add that Georgia also manage to reach the podium with two fighters last World Championship in weight categories. This is more or less only male fighters,Tamar Bibileishvili being the only female fighter – reaching the EC podium two times – 2018/16.
Our biggest fear due to this European Championship 2021, would be that it will be organized with few nations in the line up. Covid-19 will for sure have some impact in the support of the tournament, it will be a question of how much. We see an possibility that the EC will be a Championship that only some nations will attend, and other nations must stay home. If so it will affect the number of fighters in each category – and then the question will be open how to solve this?
We certainly do not hope that more athletes than the quota from the same nation can participate. The reason is that this is a qualifying tournament, and it is not close to being fair if this is done while some countries are prevented from participating due to covid-19.
One think for sure, the time will show – and no doubt that it is a positive drive, one must try, and one must makes plans – if not everything will die out. But to hold a so importaint tournament as this one, everything must be done right.
We cross our fingers and toes – for good health and a good championship!