IKO1 Worlds – Controversy continues

Controversy continues to haunt the Kyokushin Karate IKO1 World Tournament. Read on for details…

Let me preface this article with some thoughts…

As Dana White, President of the UFC, always says… if you leave the decision of the fight in the hands of the judges then you are open to their interpretation of the fight. Kyokushin Karate is no different to this. Judging is a hard thing to do. Judges see the fight from different angles and have their own interpretation as to what is going to win the fight. If you don’t completely dominate the fight or gain a wazari or ippon then complaining about a judges decision will get you no where.

Anyway – on to the article…

Judging again made a mockery of the so called unbiased 9th World Tournament this month.The first and second day saw complete losses to Japanese fighters but still the judges raised flags in the favour of the Japanese as well as certain favourite fighters.

The standard between judges was atrocious – it appeared ads through there was no similarities between the judges as each judged changed the tournament rules as they went along.With a strong European contingent in the crowd this year, who were happy to express their disapproval, the Tokyo Gymnasium had never seen such noise with booing and jeering coming on every bad decision.

The last fight of Day 2 saw a terrible decision (5-0) to see Uchida go through to the final 32, topping off what was perhaps the worst day of judging ever at a world tournament.

Obviously something was said as the standard of judging on day 3 increased (marginally) with Shihan Nic Cujic making decisions to knock out 2 of the Japanese fighters.

Terrible referring in the Aturo top 16 fight saw Aturo getting away with pushing, which had been stamped down on in the tournament, when finally the judge saw it fit to give Aturo a penalty. When the time ran out the flags were raised against Aturo but Matsui stepped in to save the So-Honbu fighter. Needless to say, the crowd were not very happy.

Aturo was a better fighter – but only when he pushed to move the fast attacking Japanese lightweight away from him, as this was being penalised in the tournament, perhaps he didn’t deserve to go though – in any case it took Matsui to save him – similar to the Osipov incident of the 8th World Tournament.

Topping off the terrible judging at this years tournament was Isobe’s judging in the 3rd place final. Darmen Sadvokasov vs Artur Hovhannisian. It appeared that Isobe could only see the white fighter, Darmen, constantly warning him but choosing to ignore the continued raising of red flags from all of the corner judges for Aturo’s pushing. Aturo having almost been removed from the tournament, because of the pushing, seemed to be able to do no wrong in the eyes of Isobe, as it appeared Isobe had made up his mind that Aturo was going to finish in 3rd place before the tournament has started.

Perhaps it was Isobe’s dislike for the Russians or instructions from Matsui to ensure the So-Honbu fighter placed well.

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