We’re all over World Karate Champs

Two MMU Sport scholars have excelled at this year’s WUKF World Karate Championships.

MMU undergraduate students Tyler McKenna and Amber Sawford both competed brilliantly in the competition in Dublin.

Tyler returned with two medals, a bronze in the junior male shito-ryu kata and a silver medal in the senior male 70kg kumite.

After winning the 75kg men’s kumite at the United World Karate England Championships in November last year it has been a very successful eight months for the MMU Sport scholar.

“I’ve had international success before but I think once I stop and realise what these two medals mean I’ll appreciate them just that bit more,” he said.

Tyler has been using MMU’s Platt Lane facilities to help him train, using the specialist strength and conditioning suite, which he says has helped him in his preparations for the World Championships.

“My preparation went great, I wasn’t doing anything too intense for the couple of weeks before to avoid undue injury,” he said.

“Strength and conditioning throughout the year has definitely given me extra building blocks to add to my game in terms of extra power and speed.”

Amber was over the moon to finish fourth at her first World Championships and is already looking forward to next year.

“It was an absolutely fantastic experience,” she said.

“It was a very long competition, with most days being over 12 hours, so I was incredibly drained by the time I got home but it was great and I cannot wait to do it all again.”

The 20-year-old is already looking to getting back into training when she returns from a short trip to Budapest.

Amber and Tyler continue to balance their studies with international competition with the assistance of their MMU sport scholarships, which assist them financially, with excellent facilities as well as physiotherapy, strength and conditioning and nutritional support.

Talking about his future in the sport, Tyler hopes to head to Romania in December for the European Champions Cup.

Tyler will be taking some time away this summer as he heads to Lourdes, his fourth trip to the south of France to assist the elderly and disabled.

The 20-year-old is determined to continue the hard and won’t be giving himself much of a rest as he continues to train for the competitions that remain this year.

Amber is also staying focussed as she hopes to travel to Italy in October to compete in the European Championships, but first Amber will be celebrating her 21st birthday in a few weeks.

Congratulations to both Tyler and Amber on their World Championship success, and happy birthday Amber!

For more information on our sport scholarships visit our website here. http://www2.mmu.ac.uk/sport/sport-scholarships/

Written by Jack Colwell

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