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GRAND WINNER Sadriddin Saymatov taking Karate by storm


The 2017 GRAND WINNER of the Male Kumite -60kg category is SADRIDDIN SAYMATOV. At 20-years-old, the young karateka from Uzbekistan has become the biggest surprise of the season and the only competitor – together with Japan’s Ayumi Uekusa - who has managed to win three golds in Karate 1-Premier League this year. 

Saymatov has experienced one of the most meteoric ascents to Karate stardom of recent times. Before taking the Karate 1-Premier League by storm this year, the biggest promising athlete of today’s Karate had participated in only three senior international competitions: the 2016 World Championships, the 2016 Karate 1-Premier League in Dubai and the 2015 Asian Championships. In none of these three events the young karateka managed to win a single bout. 

Then came the 2016 AKF Cadet, Junior & U21 Championships. At the event celebrated in Indonesia, the Uzbek hero took his first gold after dominating the U21 Male Kumite -60kg category with a flashing performance. The quest to the top of the podium would be repeated in his next three international appearances. 


In Paris, in the opening event of the 2017 season, Saymatov arrived with a baggage of only three bouts in senior international competitions and no wins. It was then an outstanding surprise when against all odds, the at-the-time 19-year-old Shotokan karateka made it to the final of one of the most important Karate competitions of the year. 

His performance on the tatami at the Pierre de Coubertin sport hall was so dazzling that Saymatov convincingly won all his six bouts and only allowed two yukos throughout the competition. His victory in the final over Malaysia’s Senthilkumaran Selvarajoo was one of the highlights of the season since the newcomer beat his rival by a conclusive 6-0. 

The impressive triumph of the "baby face" karateka in Paris was not just a flash in the pan. Barely a month later, Saymatov repeated accomplishment claiming gold at the Karate 1-Premier League in Rotterdam. In the Dutch city, the Karate Star in the making surprised again with his incredible speed and his offensive approach. In six bouts, Saymatov connected a total of 23 points and received only three yukos. 


Sadriddin Saymatov confirmed his spectacular progress at the third big event of the season. In Dubai, the young karateka claimed his third gold in Karate 1-Premier League and achieved an accomplishment only matched this year by Japan’s Ayumi Uekusa. At the Emirate city, the 20-year-old got 24 points in seven bouts and received 8 points. The final against Turkey’s Aykut Kaya was a memorable roller-coaster of aggressive Karate and a festival of ippons that ended 8-5 for the Uzbek karateka. 

A silver medal at the Asian Championships and the early elimination in the last Karate 1-Premier League in Halle/Leipzig completed the season of ascent to Karate’s glory for Saymatov. The 1st Dan karateka, who has won the national championship eight times already, received the Grand Winner award as a recognition of his outstanding year. 

The future is bright for 20-year-old Saymatov who is set to become the “crown jewel” of international Karate. 

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