A bunch of kids from San Jose del Monte, Bulacan could be the next big thing in karate.
Steven Jhudiel Morales, Solara Uriel Morales and Zemira Zaigen Gawad Daz – all products of grassroots program of the International Shotokan Karate Federation-Philippine Shotokan Karate Federation-San Jose Del Monte Bulacan (ISKF-PSKI SJDM Bulacan) which us one of the active clubs affiliated with the Karate Pilipinas
“They really wanted to follow the footsteps of our Sensei Adora Aquino, a former national team karate member,” coach Mary Anne Guillermo, a Karate Pilipinas licensed coach, said.
Steven Jhudiel Morales, 12, one of the most accomplished young fighters of the ISKF-PSKI SJDM Bulacan, was a recent Karate Pilipinas National Championships kata and kumite gold medalist at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
He also dominated the kumite and kata divisions of the ISKF-PSKI Olongapo Karatedo Championships last June, and the 3rd ABR Cup Karate Championships Intermediate Kata, where he won the 12-13-year-old and 14-15-year-old boys divisions gold.
The eight-year-old Solara won the recent kata girls’ division gold medal in the 3rd ABR Cup Karate Championships while bagging also a silver in the team kata, silver in the kumite and bronze in the team kumite.
Daz, also an eight-year-old, captured the silver medal in the kata 6-7-year-old division of ISKF-PSKI Olongapo Invitational Karatedo Championships also last June. She also took home the team and individual kata silver medals and individual kumite silver during the 3rd ABR Cup Karate Championships recently.
“These kids will grow with a lot of potentials to become the next Junna Tsukii and possibly become world champions someday so who knows? At young age, they really showed great improvements from time to time,” Guillermo added.
Other members of the club are 13-year-old Nicel Ezra Villegas and 14-year-old Julia Claret Bintulan, who also brought home a lot of different kata and kumite medals from the Batang Pinoy national competitions in 2018 and 2019.
Aquino was a former member of the Philippine National Team and a bronze winner in the 2003 Vietnam Southeast Asian Games and 2019 World Police and Fire Games double gold medalist in Chengdu, China. She is an active member of Karate Pilipinas technical official.