Karate kids kick on
DEDICATED students from a south Lismore karate school will have the chance to test their talents against national opposition.
The group, who all fight at the Success Martial Arts Black Belt Academy, has booked places at the December's National All Styles Championships.
Consistent performances against state level opposition have earned the group, spearheaded by juniors Renee Noble and Mitchell Bucher, berths at the prestigious Melbourne tournament.
Club coach Richard Marlin said he was delighted with the achievements of his charges.
"It is a great achievement," he said.
"This is something they strive for and it is one of their goals to get there.
"It is always exciting to coach your students, watch them grow and see their response to pressure."
Thirteen-year-old Renee and Mitchell, 10, booked their berths after winning their respective age divisions at the recent National All Styles State Championships.
Fellow students Brodie Flynn, Shayne West, Andrew Bell, Jake Crimmins and Jake Noble took second places at the tournament, held at the Carrara Sports Stadium on the Gold Coast.
Brock Fryer and Brett O'Driscoll rounded off a great event for the club by capturing a pair of third spots.
Their performances - together with results at earlier preliminary events - were good enough to secure each fighter a place at December's nationals.
Club representatives Courtney Noble and Brian Donaldson did not take part in the state event, but had already done enough to book their spots for Melbourne.
Marlin said their performances were the best the Union St club had achieved in several years.
"This is more students than I have had go through to national level in a number of years," he said.
"We have had rejuvenation in karate in recent years, with a lot of people going to competitions.
"They are a good team, they work together and it helps motivate them to strive for better results."
The nationals will feature fighters from across Australia contesting bouts across various age divisions.
"It is good for the fighters to take on that level of challenge," Marlin said.
"Everyone is under a bit more pressure at nationals as it is the highest level. It will be good to see how they go."