Japanese karatekas are set to be involuntary to rebook their places at the suspended Tokyo Olympic after the World Karate Federation studied its qualification process for the Sports.
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According to Kyodo News, a senior official at the Japan Karate Federation (JKF) said the organization would “redo” Olympic qualification in two Kumite categories following the announcement from the WKF. Masao Kagawa, chairman of the JKF Growth Committee, supposed the men’s under-67 kilograms and women’s under-61kg divisions would be pretentious.
It means Naoto Sago, who qualified in the under-67kg class, and women’s under-61kg athlete Mayumi Someya will have to qualify again for Tokyo Olympic, postponed until 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic. Both had been selected for the Japanese team after events that contributed to the Tokyo Olympic qualifying were canceled.
The WKF said its revised system supersedes the previous process, under which 40 karatekas secured their spot at the Games. Some of those athletes will now have to qualify again under the new system, which the WKF supposed aims to address “missed opportunities” after the coronavirus crisis forced the cancellation and postponement of numerous events in the sport.
“The essential statement of the four athletes qualifying per category, via the Olympic Standup, was made by the WKF on the sympathetic that the Olympic 2020 Games were to take place as initially arranged,” the WKF supposed last week.
The WKF’s process was approved by the International Olympic Committee, which has told International Federations to stick to their original systems for the postponed Games where possible. The IOC had also guaranteed those athletes who had qualified for Tokyo Olympic would keep their places at the rearranged event, set to take place from July 23 to August 8 next year.
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