A Grade 10 pupil from Sans Souci Girls High in Newlands, Zahra Boltman, hopes to be selected for the UFAK karate championship taking place in Egypt later this year after receiving the highest ranking for kumite.
Kumite, or fighting, forms part of karate training along with kata and kihon. In kumite, a person trains against an opponent using specific skills and techniques stemming from kata and kihon.
Zahra lives in Athlone and is the youngest of six children. She started practising karate at 10, getting her provincial colours in 2017 and African colours in 2018.
She competed in the junior nationals in March and won bronze for kata and silver for kumite. At the Bloemfontein League 1 in April, she took double gold in kata and kumite in the junior female division.
Zahra is ranked number one in her kumite division and number three in her kata division.
Last month, in Durban, she was selected for the UFAK karate championship but she has to enter the women’s tournament later this year to make the final selection.
Sans Souci Girls High Principal Ruschda O’Shea said: “This is such a proud moment for Zahra as a woman because this is not really classified as a girls’ sport. When she became a South African representative, I got goosebumps and had a special assembly in honour of her achievement.”