Osaka’s boys are the best of British
TEN players from Judo Club Osaka were selected to represent the Southern Area at the British National Teams Championships in Walsall earlier this month.
The Junior boys had eight Aldershot-based Osaka players in the 11-man team with Jamie Mansfield, Danny Holt, Archie Platt, Calum Game, Harrison Brown, James Fowler, Harry Boby and Peter Vincent all in action and fighting well.
With the other three Area players also on song, the team won their pool convincingly and after beating the Midlands 7-4 in the semi-final, clinched their place in the final against Scotland.
The South started brightly, surging into a 4-0 lead only for the Scots to hit back and lead 5-4. Eventually, however, the south found another gear to come out on top 7-4.
They were presented with their gold medals and the British National Team Championship by London 2012 Olympian Euan Burton.
Meanwhile, Mollie Game and Madeleine Herbert selected to play for the Junior girls team, who also won their pool but lost in the semi-final to Northern Home Counties 5-4 to take bronze.
Osaka then took a 17- strong team to the Hampshire Open at the Mountbatten Centre, Portsmouth with 13 medalling.
The girls started the day, with Emily Cowell (u57) and Shelley Ludford (u70), winning gold, Courtney Saunders (u48) and Annie Boby (u63) taking silver and Lucy Williams (also u63) claiming bronze.
Next up were the younger boys with Robert Worsfold (u27), Matthew Grant (u30) and Ben Grist (u34) all taking bronze.
The final set of medals on the day were won on the mat by the 12-15 year olds. Luke Saunders (u34) and Tom Huckstep (u60) won gold, with Matt Brimicombe (u50) taking silver and Daniel Grant (u38) and Kieran Masters (u42) bronze.
Top guns:The Southern team receive their medals from Euan Burton (right)