Photo: AVN / Report
(Caracas, November 5 – News24) – Venezuelan karate player Antonio Diaz is preparing to fight his latest global competition before retiring after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
These are the World Cups that have to open the door for the Tokyo Games 2020, where karate will make its debut as an Olympic sport and in which the 38-year-old from Caracas will finish his career.
"This will be my last World Cup, so I want to enjoy, to live every moment. It has for me, beyond the enthusiasm of competition, the emotional ensemble"Diaz said Efe on his eve goes to tatami in search of a new kata medal.
The eternal Pan-American champion (eleven continent champion) won his first world medal just in Madrid, the bronze of the 2002 edition. He reiterated the metal in 2004 and 2006, it was silver in 2008, gold in 2010 and 2012 and bronze again 2014 and 2016.
He is now sixth in the world, in a ranking led by Japanese Ryo Kiyuna, world champion in the last two editions, and Spanish Damián Quintero, with whom he can pass this time to the semifinals.
"My first medal was in Madrid and I'm here again, this circle is happening, for me this medal was very important, the first of eight." I like to compete again here, "said karate, who is coming to the capital of Spain after several meetings in Japan and Barcelona.
In his latest contest, the Tokyo Premier League did not receive the "expected results" and He fell in quarter-finals against Turk Ali Sufuoglu but felt "good feelings".
"I made a difficult round in the quarterfinals, but at the beginning of the year I won the Turkish twice and now I won two more, but I felt good and the defeat allowed me to see things that had not been adapted," he said.
The Japanese Kiyuna is now "the big favorite", but "Damián is at home and has this in his favor".
Antonio Díaz feels like a different karate who went to the podium in Madrid sixteen years ago. "The main difference is the experience that has been given me all the time, and now I have seen the departure after the Olympic Games."
Games for which you see almost the most difficult, sorting, then only ten karatecas from around the world will be in each category.
"Classification is a complicated and long period, but of course I see myself in Tokyo," he said. "It's one of the motivations you need to follow, you have to be steady on the road, it's going to be a year of many events and that's what a lot of us do."
This Tuesday will play the previous rounds of the World Cup and, if necessary, the repeat, to know if it will be Saturday in the medal race.
Venezuela decided in 2016 to extend his career to watch the Olympic debut of karate.
With information from EFE