AMA at PKO NIMA North East Championships Newton Aycliffe Leisure Centre, November 2nd ‘03
On Sunday November 2nd the Phoenix Karate Organisation (PKO) again hosted the North East Open charity tournament, in aid of a local spinal unit.
The AMA took a substantial squad and performed as expected, bringing home a hat full of silverware.
Top honours went to Dean Pallas in the Senior Male Individual kata. His final Gojushiho saw him to a unanimous victory against local favourite John Hodgson (himself a former AMA member).
Dean, a Shotokan 3rd Dan with Doushikai karate club in Sunderland, is a newcomer to the AMA, but has taken a trophy at each of the five tournaments he has attended with the AMA. Dean passed his black belt at the age of nine, having got into karate to emulate his older brother, David. He made the KUGB England squad at 10 and took British titles in kata and kumite in 1997 and 1999 respectively.
The AMA is proving a dominant force in team kata, taking gold and silver in the junior and senior events. “A” team member Lisa Hill also took gold in the junior individual kumite. Catherine Smith also took gold in the junior individual kata event.
Some international class athletes patronised the senior kumite, providing some cracking entertainment. The men’s lightweight final was between England’s Paul Newby and Scotland’s Neil Farquar, with Newby taking the title.
In the men’s openweight, AMA’s Martyn Skipper lost to Hodge in the Semi-final to take bronze. The AMA’s Adam Boulton lost 4-3 to Hodge in the final to take the runner up position.
The team event saw PKO, led by Hodge, take the gold on home turf, and the AMA “A” team of Boulton, Pete McGarrity, Ben Moir and Alex Mason runners up. 3rd place went to the AMA “B” team of Martyn Skipper, Craig Smith, Dean Pallas (for his second medal of the day) and Kevin Merriman.
John Hodgson also took a special award, the inaugural Harold Stephenson Shield for his three golds and a silver.
Total AMA tally Gold 5; Silver 8; Bronze 5
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