TEHRAN (Dsipatches) – Iranian karatekas of Kumite discipline secured four quotas in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics as two major ranking events have been canceled due to coronavirus.
After Karate 1-Premier League in Morocco, the top-flight event in Madrid has also been canceled as Spain is implementing strict measures to contain the outbreak. "The World Karate Federation regrets to inform that the event of Karate’s first-class series of international tournaments scheduled to be held in Madrid (Spain) from April 17 to 19 had to be canceled due to the Covid-19 outbreak,” reads a statement by the WKF.
Karate 1-Premier League was the major event that athletes could gain points and increase their ranking for the Olympics qualification.
According to the Iranian Karate Federation, WKF had announced that the last event held in Salzburg would be considered as the final round of ranking series for the Olympics. With this implemented, Iran has secured four quotas by Bahman Asgari (Male Kumite -75kg), Hamideh Abbasali (Female Kumite +61kg), Sajjad Ganjzadeh (Male Kumite +75kg), Sara Bahmanyar in (Female Kumite -55kg) who are in the top four of their respective categories according to points collected.
Meanwhile, the Iranian team that had stayed in Germany after the cancelation of travel to Morocco, waiting for the fate of the event in Madrid, will depart for Tehran on Saturday.
Also, Tokyo 2020 Qualification Tournament is scheduled to be held in May in France and if it is not canceled, Iranian kata practitioners can compete for two other quotas of Female -61kg and Male -67kg categories.
Karate is due to make its Olympic debut in Tokyo 2020. There will be eight karate gold medals up for grabs at Tokyo - men’s kata, women’s kata and three different weight classes for both men’s and women’s Kumite events.