Sat, 16 Dec 2000

New kata fighters for 2001 SEAG

JAKARTA (JP): Secretary General of the Indonesian Karate-Do Federation (FORKI), Hendardji, confirmed on Thursday that two seniors players -- women's karateka Omita Olga Ompi and men's counterpart Abdullah Kadir -- have quit the training program for 2001 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.

Hendardji said FORKI would invite Endah Zubaedah to replace Omita in the women's individual kata event. Omita has to withdraw from the Games due to her pregnancy.

Aswan Ali will replace Kadir in the men's individual kata. Kadir quit the team in order to focus on his career.

"Endah won a gold in the 2000 KASAD (Army Chief of Staff) Cup in Palembang, South Sumatra, recently. We will also call Aswan Ali to replace veteran men's karateka Abdullah Kadir in the men's kata event," said the Military Police colonel.

Hendardji said the women's karatekas would measure their skills in the 2001 Ladies Open championships in Japan, the same place where the men's team will be sent for training.

FORKI has invited 29 karatekas to train for the SEA Games in their home towns. Athletes will be selected in February to attend the centralized training here. FORKI is aiming to achieve seven gold in the biennial event, the same amount the team grabbed in 1999 Games in Brunei Darussalam.

"We will select 21 karatekas from the 19 events for the core team. We will also decide the coaches in January. We cannot expect more than seven golds this time because we have a funding shortfall for the training session," he said. (ivy)