WIM Boshoff was the only African karateka to make it into the top eight during the World Karate Federation (WKF) Juniors and Cadet Under-21 championships held in Guadalajara in Spain a fortnight ago.
Boshoff made it to the top eight of the male under-21 u/78kg kumite division, while Free State karateka Luther van Zyl reached the last 16 in the under-16 male u/57kg kumite division.
The Spain expedition in which more than 80 countries took part has left Boshoff more confident after surpassing his first international performance in Malaysia two years back.
“It was a good experience and what I can see now is that can compete with the world’s best,” Boshoff told the Free State Times this week.
Boshoff said his first test of the world championships was a disappointing one as he was dismissed in the first stages of the annual tournament.
“My first international tournament didn’t go out well in Malaysia and this time I was more mature going into the tournament. I even felt I could have done better as no South African junior is yet to receive an award from the tournament,” he added.
The 19-year-old karateka says he is taking the upcoming South African University Karate Championships as a piece of cake having rubbed shoulders with the world’s best.
“I have grown to be more competitive and through hard work I can achieve anything now. I am now preparing for the Durban games so that I can stand a chance to make it to the World Student Games next year,” he said.
Four Free State High Performance Centre karatekas namely Kosie Kritzinger, Niko Papachrysostoms Danie Schutte and van Zyl were part of the 17-member SA Protea karate team.
The team was led by Sensei Ian Le Roux and coach Nechodemus Banyane.
The two coaches from South Africa were accredited at the championships to mentor at higher levels of karate competitions.