EKF English National Championships ~ 8-9 April 2017
English National Champion ~ Aimee Sell
So the new home of the English National Championships was experienced for the first time. Located more centrally in England, the new venue had moved from it's usual home in Sheffield to the new Leicester Community Sports Arena.
Being held over the weekend of 8-9th April 2017, the EKF had put on a great championship using the arena's greater facilities to also include a large warm-up area for the athletes, hosting showcase finals for the official WKF categories being contested and live streaming the final day of competition. All-in-all it was great improvement making for a great championships.
Female Senior Kata
Due to the number of athletes competing there were only three rounds to
contest meaning everyone could bring out their best Katas to perform in
their quest for glory.
For Aimee there was added pressure this year. Not only had Aimee been selected above all other athletes in England to represent her country in the European Karate Championship Individual Female Kata category, she had also been appointed as the U21 National Kata Coach earlier in the year. Being a competitor has it pressures, being a coach brings its own pressures too, but being a competitor/coach means you're expected to be top of your game, leading by example with many expectations on your shoulders. Not everyone can cope with this situation, the question was could Aimee handle this extra focused attention on her...?
First Round Quarter Final
Aimee had been drawn red for this round and faced Yanagi-Kai's Kelly Horsfall in this opening round. Both Aimee and Kelly performed the same Kata, the long and highly ranked Suparinpai. Good performances but Aimee secured the win 5 flags to 0 placing her into the semi-finals.
Second Round Semi Final
Drawn red once more, Aimee was to perform first facing another representative of Yanagi-Kai, Alice Hylton. Aimee performed another top Shito-Ryu Kata, Chatanyara Kushanku, with Alice replying with her own top Shotokan Kata performance of Unsu. Once again Aimee came out victorious with a 5 flags to 0 win securing her place in the showcase final being held later in the evening.
Third Round Final
After many hours awaiting the completion of the remaining categories before the preparation of the showcase finals, the competitors were finally in action on the center matted area. The final had placed Aimee facing yet another Yanagi-Kai competitor, this time Natalie Payne. Natalie was up first and performed Chatanyara Kushanku Kata. Aimee responded with a superb performance of another highly rated and technical Shito-Ryu Kata, Papuren. The win was a convincing 5 flags to 0 for Aimee securing her 11th Individual English National title, her 14th in total. What an amazing accumulation of national titles.
A resounding success for Aimee, winning gold
without dropping a flag throughout the competition. Coach, competitor,
England representative, Aimee had answered the question in style with
Aimee thriving on that extra pressure showing why she's one of England's
Well done Karate Girl.