On October 21st, 2017, Ambassador Yanagisawa presided over the 1st Japanese Ambassador’s Karate Championships, organized by the Embassy of Japan in collaboration with the Malawi Karate Union. About 40 Karate athletes paticipated in a Kata tournament where they competed perfection of Karate forms. In demonstrations, karate players showcased advanced application of Karate for self denfense, Kumite (sparring) matches, and different styles of Karate. Two JICA volunteers who also served as sub judges conducted sophisticated demonstrations that entertained the audience very much.
In her speech, Ambassador Yanagisawa hailed the performance of Karate athletes, and expressed hope that Malawi would have a chance to participate in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic that adopted Karate as an Olympic principle for the first time in history. She also touched upon the mental development aspect of playing Karate by saying that Karate is not only a physical exercise but also a facilitator to develop self-discipline and sportsmanship.
The event was graced by Mr Jameson Ndalama, Director of Sports from the Ministry of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development as a guest of honour. Representatives from Malawi Olympic Committe, Malawi Police and Malawi Defense Force also witnessed this event together with an audience.