The Sunday Times

LETHAL SISTER ACT

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TWINS often have a sixth sense, an ability to communicat­e without words, but it’s not often they share the same recurring dream.

Sisters Marijana and Mishela Dimoska have the same dream every night – representi­ng Australia in karate at the Tokyo Olympics.

Karate will make its Olympic debut in 2020 and the 20-year-old sisters who now call Western Australia home after emigrating from Macedonia 12 months ago, can almost reach out and touch it.

Or, to use a martial arts metaphor, subdue it with an open fist strike or roundhouse kick.

“We were waiting for that a long time and (before) for 40 years karate has been waiting to become an Olympic sport,” Marijana said. “It is our main goal to compete at the Olympic Games. We are training hard for that.”

To qualify, they will have to accumulate points at World Karate Federation Premier League events and other major tournament­s, such as the Oceania Championsh­ips.

“It is our dream first to go to Olympics, but it will be so tough,” Mishela said.

The pair are West Australian Institute of Sport scholarshi­p holders and train under their parents Zlatko and Eli, who are referees with the WKF. Both parents represente­d Macedonia and were highly decorated, but did not get the opportunit­y to perform at the Olympics.

They don’t want their children, who started training at four and competing at five, to miss their opportunit­y. “The Olympics were one dream (that never happened) but now maybe that dream is coming true,” Eli said. She said the girls could still officially represent Macedonia. “(But) We are happy here and grateful to all of the members of the Australian Karate Federation who have helped us here. It is an honour to represent Australia,” Eli said.

The sisters reached the finals in the junior (under 21s) and senior categories at the national championsh­ips in Caloundra last month. Marijana won gold in both. There was also a gold and silver medal haul at the Oceania Championsh­ips earlier this year. Both have won medals at world under 21s level, European titles and in World Cups.

“They are very focused young people and I am not just saying that because I am their mother,” she said. “They have goals and know what they have to do to improve themselves.”

The Olympic event will be an eliminatio­n system judged on kata (forms/movement) and kumite (sparring, grouped by weight class).

 ??  ?? Seeing double: WA karate twins Marijana, below on left, and Mishela Dimoska. They are hoping to compete in karate (an Olympic sport for the first time) at Tokyo 2020. Picture: Daniel Wilkins
Seeing double: WA karate twins Marijana, below on left, and Mishela Dimoska. They are hoping to compete in karate (an Olympic sport for the first time) at Tokyo 2020. Picture: Daniel Wilkins
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