Sunday, 7 June 2009

Another year, another Bowden 'attempt'

Team Liverpool travelled to deepest darkest Reading to take part in the 2009 Sir Frank Bowden Kendo Taikai. Despite Dave initially being asked to randomly choose the initial competition bouts they went with a pool system. Our pool meant we would have two matches each and face Mumeishi A team and then Hizen C team.

The 2009 Liverpool team was:
  1. Senpo - Dave Weston
  2. Jiho - Daniel Antoni
  3. Chuken - Mike Carter
  4. Fukusho - Joe Willmott
  5. Taisho - Oscar Carter
First up Dave survived the first 3 minute encounter to Aziz, unfortunately losing to a Men cut. Second Daniel in his first ever shiai faced a 4th Dan and also lasted the entire match only losing one point for two hansoku, where he stepped out of the shiai-jo twice.
Mike was up next and his opponent took one men cut and then a hiki-men on our chuken. 
Joe had a difficult time losing to two men cuts and was mightily displeased with himself but desperate to do well in his next fence.
Oscar brought up the rear and started strong but lost to one kote but surviving the 3 minutes.

The second line up against Hizen C and Dave once again got caught out with a men cut and in a similar scenario to Daniel's he misjudged the boundary of the shiai-jo twice and lost a point due to the two hansoku. The match had overrun it's 3 minutes by this time but it was still a disappointing exit. Our shiai virgin Daniel stepped up once again and acquitted himself spectacularly. He managed another 3 minutes this time without conceding a point.
Mike was up next and once again got caught by hiki-men and then a men cut.
Joe battled valiantly this time, desperate not to prove himself but his opponent caught him quite a tai-atari that practically took him off his feet. He caught his balance on one leg but whilst he struggled to regain posture the Hizen Fukusho seized the open men cut. Aftre the ippon Joe continued with spirit but got caught out with one of his own favorite waza kote-nuki-men near the full-time mark.
Lastly Oscar managed to get in a few do cuts and kaeshi-do's but with no score until the match was paused. From the reset the Hizen Taisho shot out of the blocks to seize a men.

Overall it was a deeply challenging Bowden with far more questions about our efforts than previous years. The results seem quite disheartening but I think we acquitted ourselves well in the face of such strong opposition, that contained considerably higher grades and GB squad members. Videos and photos will follow in the gallery and hopefully we will be able to assess where we can improve for next time.

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