The Cambodian Karate Federation, chaired by Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth, took advantage of the karate competitions at the 3rd National Games and the 1st National Para Games as a test to strengthen their shortcomings in terms of technique and strategies to prepare for the 32nd SEA Games in 2023, hosted by Cambodia.

At the opening ceremony for the karate competition at the Royal University of Phnom Penh on November 27, Samedy Sivathna, vice-president of the federation, welcomed all delegates and officials who participated in the opening ceremony of the competition.

Sivathna, who is also deputy secretary of state for the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, stated that the Cambodian government organised the first national games competition in 2016 in order to strengthen the capacity of the organising committee and athletes to participate in the 32nd SEA Games 2023.

“The karate competition at the third national games is meant to be an event of unity, peace, testing, preparation and capacity building to assess, improve and fill in the gaps base on the standards, experiences, techniques, strategies and tactics for organising the 2023 SEA Games, which is an honour for our nation,” he said.

According to a report by the Karate Organising Committee for the 3rd National Games, the event had a total of 102 participants, including 11 delegates, 15 coaches, 47 male and 27 females athletes from the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Economy and Finance, Ministry of National Defence, Phnom Penh City Hall, Kandal and Kampong Speu provinces competing in a total of 12 “kata” performances and matches.

Sivathna also urged the technical officers, especially the referees and judges for the matches, to work transparently and without discrimination to make the karate competition at the 3rd National Games a success, as this sport has been growing in importance on the international stage as well.

“On behalf of His Excellency Aun Pornmoniroth, and on my own behalf, I would like to thank His and Her Excellencies, all the committees and coaches who have actively cooperated, supported and participated in organising the competition and promoting the sport to grow in the region and on the international stage around the world,” Sivathna said.