The Kenya Kickboxing Federation Competition Secretary and Coach,Takid Master, has challenged the government through the Ministry of Sports, Heritage and Culture to chip in to take Kickboxing in the country to a higher level.
Speaking at the annual Chairman’s Cup Kickboxing Championship held at the Pumwani Social Hall in Nairobi on Saturday, Takid mentions that he is really working towards the sport getting the recognition needed.
“I’m really pushing for Kickboxing to reach this level. The outcome of the teams is amazing for sure and it’s motivating,” he says.
The Martial arts coach notes that the sport has been growing rapidly while also pointing out some of the setbacks derailing Kickboxing in the country.
“Compared to other martial arts, Kickboxing is gaining momentum in the country the major challenge we are facing currently is lack of facilitation, there is no enough equipment,” mentions Takid.
As the Championship was ongoing some youth came to disrupt the tournament claiming ownership of the ring while also arguing that they are in charge of maintenance of the hall and that payment should have been made to them.
Takid feels that such could be avoided if they had their own ring.
“The ring belongs to the Nairobi City Council whom I made arrangements with. The youth came to interrupt our tournament just because they maintain the hall. If we could manage to get sponsors to come in and at least support us to get our own ring, that could really elevate Kickboxing.”
Master also mentions other steps to be used to elevate the sport and see it thrive even in the International level.
“We will be holding tournaments in every region monthly as per what is needed for players to be in the International level therefore we ask the government to come on board to support all these other sports (martial arts) so that we can shine when we go for international assignments.”
The champion of the Boys Under 14 category, Titus Bwire of Hardcore also decries lack of equipment as the main challenge.
“I would like the government to come in and at least provide for us gloves, shin guards and headgear since the ones we have are worn out,” says Bwire.
The teenager from Kayole, Nairobi also shares his day’s performance and what attracted him to the sport.
“ I have really tried but I don’t think I’ve given it my all.
He adds, “ Everyone in my family is a boxer. That really motivated me and I’m determined to be a champion like my mom. Kickboxing is good it keeps one from engaging in drugs.”
8 teams participated in the championship and here is the list of the rankings:
- One Tribe
By Stella Anyango