Tunbridge Invitation and Southern Kyu and Masters
4 November 2007

Kin Ryu’s Senior medallists: David O’ Doherty, Gareth Norman, Gavin Archibald and junior medallists: Bradley Avery, Kimberley Davy, Emily Humphrey, Lauren Nielsen, Liam Nielsen, David O’ Doherty, Joseph O ‘Doherty, James Rivers, Andrew Robertson, Corlia Robertson, Jack Thompson and Ben Wright .

Last weekend saw a flurry of medals for Kin Ryu Judo Club as both the junior and senior players took to the mat in events around the South of England.

On Saturday 13 juniors from the club competed at the Beechwood House invitation held in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.

This was the first event for many of the clubs young players and although they were nervous they were determined to do their best.

The first to fight were the players in the 5 – 6 year old age group.

The club had three players in this section, Corlia Robertson, Liam Nielsen and Ben Wright.

For all three this was to be a tough event as they have only been doing judo for a short time but all fought their best and were rewarded with bronzes for Ben and Liam and a Silver for Corlia.

All three were then awarded the spirit of judo award for their groups for their excellent display of sportsmanship.

Following these were the players in the 7 – 8 year old group.

The club was represented by Jack Thompson, Joseph O’Doherty, Kimberley Davy and Andrew Robertson.

Andrew was the first to fight and set a high standard for the others losing only his final fight and taking a well deserved silver.

Joseph and Kimberly then followed suit also winning all their fights except one to take silvers in their groups they were also both rewarded with the spirit of judo awards in their groups.

Jack was the last to fight and found himself in a tough group but he did well to take bronze and the throw of the day after winning his final fight with an outstanding throw that any seasoned player would be proud of.

The 9,10 and 11 year old section saw some of the toughest fights with six Kin Ryu fighters in this group.

The first to fight was David O’Doherty who was looking to hold onto his gold medal winning streak.

He was the lowest grade in his group but did not let this affect him as he stormed through to take gold.

On the adjacent mat, club mates Jordan Bryan and Bradley Avery, were drawn against each other in their group.

Both fought well to take a bronze medal each and their fight against one another was one of the closest fought contests of the day.

Bradley then rounded off this group by winning the spirit of judo award in his group.

In the next group James Rivers made his fighting debut after just six weeks of judo.

This was always going to be a tough event for him but James fought well throwing one player who was nearly two belts higher than him in his first fight.

James continued to show his determination and was rewarded with a well earned bronze medal and the spirit of judo award.

Last it was the turn of the girls and again club mates Emily Humphrey and Lauren Nielsen found they had to put their friendship aside as they were drawn against one another.

Emily fought hard, despite being the smallest in the group, and took her final fight into golden score (extra time) before narrowly losing to take bronze.

Lauren, who had watched the rest of her club mates fight throughout the day, was determined to finish the day off stylishly and she definitely delivered, winning her group and taking the gold in her first competition.

This rounded off a very tiring but enjoyable day for everyone! If Saturday was tough, Sunday was even tougher as it was the turn of the seniors who were competing at the southern area Senior and Masters closed held at K2 in Crawley.

This event is to win the title of Southern Area Champion and so sees some of the top fighters in the south competing.

Fighting in his first event was David O’Doherty (senior) who got the day off to a great start fighting in the under 73kgs Kyu grade senior section.

David had some tough fights against players younger and far more experienced than himself, but he did himself proud and was unlucky not to win his group after throwing his opponent early in his first fight and had to settle for a well deserved silver.

After this it was the turn of Gareth Norman in the +100kgs Kyu grade section, who was looking like a very strong contender for gold following his recent win at the Welsh Open.

Gareth showed that he was not looking to mess around throwing his opponent in 5 seconds and holding him down, to win his final and the title in under 30 seconds.

Finally it was the turn of Gavin Archibald in the –90kgs Masters who, after a disappointing British Masters, was out to take the gold.

Gavin showed he was on form winning all three fights, including his fight with the –100kgs Masters fighter with outstanding ippon (ten points and a win in judo) throws and taking the Gold medal and Masters title.

Well done to all!