Malaga karate fighter Damián Quintero, Olympic and world kata runner-up, qualified this Tuesday for the final of the world championships in Budapest, which he will play on Saturday against the Turkish Ali Sofuoglubronze in Tokyo 2020.
Also in kata, Paola Garcia aspires to one of the bronze medals, with the American Sakura Kokumai as her opponent.
Quintero, current European champion, won in the first round with ‘kururunfa‘ a grade of 41.9, only lower than the Italian’s 42.5 Mattia Busato, continental runner-up. In the second round he scored 43.2 points with the ‘suparinpei’ kata, more than any other competitor. Finally, the man from Malaga won the third elimination group with 43.1 for ‘anan dai’ and Sofuoglu his with 43.5 for ‘gojushiho sai’.
A printing track record
Quintero, with a history that includes nineteen individual medals in high competitioncan obtain his first world gold in Budapest, after the silvers won in 2016, 2018 and 2021.
Paola García will also compete for a medal, in her case bronze. She had a score of 41.0 with ‘kururunfa’ in the opening round, the third highest, and 41.8 with ‘suparinpei’ in the second round, also the third best. Her third round group was won by the Japanese Hikaru Ono, with 43.3. The woman from Extremadura was third with 41.8 for ‘papuren’, so she moved on to the fight for bronze. Her rival, Kokumai, was second in her group, won by Hong Kong’s Grace Lau Mo Cheung, with 43.0.