With 6 gold medals on 12 possible in the individuals, Japan ranks 1st at the 17 AKF championships. Held in Almaty (Kazakhstan) from December 18-22, the AKF Cadet, Junior, U21 and Senior championships saw, Kiyuna, Ono, Someya won the title as Poorshab and Hamedi.

By Florian Fournier

Photos : D.R 

 -60kg : Hammad opens his era

At 20, the Jordanian Hammad who participated at his 1st Asian championships wins the title and confirms his good 7th place at the Dubai World championships.

Final : Hammad (Jor) b. Meskini (Ira), 2-1

Bronze : Shaaban (Kuw) b. Baitureyev (Kaz) 1-1 / Alotaibi (Ksa) b. Akbarov (Kgz), 4-4

1. Hammad (Jor)
2. Meskini (Ira)
3. Shaaban (Kuw) / Alotaibi (Ksa)

-67kg : Nakano premiere

3rd at the World championships, the Japanese Soichiro Nakano wins his 1st continental title. At 23, he is already impressive and appears as the new Japan star in this category.

Final : Nakano (Jap) b. Alkhatami (Ksa), 7-1

Bronze : Amirali (Kaz) b. Dang (Vie), 8-0 / Almasatfa (Jor) b. Hutapea (Inakf), 2-0

1. Nakano (Jap)
2. Alkhatami (Ksa)
3. Amirali (Kaz) / Almasatfa (Jor)

 -75kg : Sakiyama for the first time

With the absence of the world champion from Uzbekistan, Dastonbek Otabolaev, this category was open and it’s the Japanese fighter Yusei Sakiyama who benefits from it.

Final : Sakiyama (Jap) b. Alzahrani (Ksa), 3-2

Bronze : Asiabari (Ira) b. Chu (Viet), 3-1 / Azhikarov (Kaz) b. Ghulam (Pak), 4-3

1. Sakiyama (Jap)
2. Alzahrani (Ksa)
3. Asiabari (Ira) / Azhikarov (Kaz)

-84kg : Poorshab is still at the top !

He was not at the World championships due to covid like all the Iran team. Zabiollah Poorshab, one of the best -84kg ever, wins the Asian championships and shows that despite his non qualification for the Olympics, is still at the top.

Final : Poorshab (Ira) b. Shimada (Jap), 4-3

Bronze : Wu (Tpe) b. Zanghbyr (Kas) 3-3 / Baek (Kor) b. Aldogail (Ksa) 7-3

1. Poorshab (Ira)
2. Shimada (Jap)
3. Wu (Tpe) / Baek (Kor)

+84kg : Hamedi remains the champion

The Olympic silver medalist, Tareg Hamedi, wins a 2nd title in a row in the Asian championships. After his fail at the World championships, Hamedi found the way of winning again.

Final : Hamedi (Ksa) b. Abazari (Ira), 4-0

Bronze : Shadykanov (Kgz) b. Sehrawat (Ind) 2-0 / Almulla (Uae) b. Bin (Cam) 6-2

1. Hamedi (Ksa)
2. Abazari (Ira)
3. Shadykanov (Kgz) / Almulla (Uae)

Kata : King Kiyuna 5th

With no surprise, Ryo Kiyuna wins the Asian title once more. After his master class at the World championships and at the Olympics, the kata legend won his 5th Asian gold.

1. Kiyuna (Jap)
2. Zaresta (Ind)
3. Almosawi (Kuw) / Shahrjerdi (Ira)

Team Kumite : Kazakhstan beats Iran 

1. Kazakhstan

2. Iran

3. Jordan / Saudi Arabia

Team Kata : Japan, of course

1. Japan

2. Iran

3. Indonesia / Kuweit




-50kg : Zangbyrbay wins at home

For the first time of her career, the Kazakh girl Zangbyrbay becomes Asian champion. At home, she beats Junaa Tsukii in the final. The Wworld champion Miho Miyahara was not attended the Asian championships.

Final : Zangbyrbay (Kaz) b. Tsukii (Phi), 9-5

Bronze : Gu (Tpe) b. Bahmanyar (Ira), 8-4 / Tsang (Hkg) b. Al Ajmi (Uae), 5-2

1. Zangbyrbay (Kaz)
2. Tsukii (Phi)
3. Gu (Tpe) / Tsang (Hkg)

-55kg : Hoang for a premiere

Without any real contender in this category, the Hong Kong girl Hoang takes the best over her opponents to win the gold medal.

Final : Hoang (Hkg) b. Ku (Tpe), 7-2

Bronze : Agung (Inakf) b. Rakhimova (Uzb) 1-0 / Khaksar (Ira) b. Zhakarova (Kaz), 3-2

1. Hoang (Hkg)
2. Ku (Tpe)
3. Agung (Inakf) / Khaksar (Ira)

-61kg : Alameri in gold

For the first time in her career, Alameri wins the continental tournament.

Finale : Alameri (Uae) vs Lim (Phi), 2-1

Bronze : Toitonova (Kgz) vs Aldrous (Jor) 3-2 / Alipourkeshka (Ira) vs Murugeesan (Mal), 4-0

1. Alameri (Uae)
2. Lim (Phi)
3. Toitonova (Kgz) / Alipourkeshka (Ira)

-68kg : 3rd title for Kayo Someya

After 2015 and 2017, Kayo Someya from Japan wins her 3rd Asian championships. In the final, she made a very good fight and wons 9-2 against the Iranian girl Heydariozomcheloe.

Finale : Someya (Jap) b. Heydariozomcheloe (Ira), 9-2

Bronze : Ho (Vie) b. Chao (Tpe), 2-1 / Kannay (Kaz) b. Khasaif (Uae), 1-0

1. Someya (Jap)
2. Heydariozomcheloe (Ira)
3. Ho (Vie) / Kannay (Kaz)

+68kg : Sawae takes the best over Berultseva

To win her first Asian championships, Yuzuki Sawae beat Sofya Berultseva, the main contender of the competition. the Kazakh girl will have to wait to win her first continental title.  

Final : Sawae (Jap) b. Berultseva (Kaz), 5-5

Bronze : Songklin (Thakf) b. Wen (Tpe) 9-1 / Borjali (Ira) b. Ho (Hkg), 8-0

1. Sawae (Jap)
2. Berultseva (Kaz)
3. Songklin (Thakf) et Borjali (Ira)

Kata : Ono succeeded to Shimizu

2nd at the World championships in Dubai, Japan’s Hikaru Ono wins her first Asian championships. Grace Lau ranks 3rd.

1. Ono (Jap)
2. Putri (Inakf)
3. Lau (Hkg) / Alforte (Phi)

Team Kumite : Vietnam ahead of UAE 

1. Vietnam

2. UAE

3. Kazakhstan / Japan

Team Kata : Japan, of course

1. Japan

2. Indonesia

3. Iran / Hong-Kong