Bhutan bagged a gold and two bronze medals from the South Asian Karate Championship 2017 that was held last week in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Four participants, Tshering Wangchuk, Dewan Monger, Karma Dorji and Tashi Phuntsho from Bhutan Karate Association left for Colombo on August 2 to participate in the 4th cadet, junior, senior, and first U-21 South Asian karate championship.

Karma Dorji won the first gold medal in Kata individual male junior category, making him the country’s first gold medalist in the regional championship. He defeated three other players from India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

Tshering Wangchuk and Dewan Monger participated in individual Kumite and won a bronze medal each.

Karma Dorji, a 16 years old student of Motithang Higher Secondary School has won several national merits in karate. The 16 years old participated in the same category for the first time in New Delhi, India last year and bagged a bronze.

He said he was hopeful about winning the championship this year. “I prepared for the championship the whole summer,” he said. He trained from 7-9 am and from 4-8 pm everyday. “The participation in New Delhi helped me. The medal is for the country. I am excited about it as my hard work is rewarded,” he said.

Karma Dorji will be participating in the Asian Karate Championship next year. “The contender of my category participated in the world championship. I am hopeful that I will be able to perform better in south Asian games too.”

The team received a warm welcome from the federation and family members at Paro airport yesterday. The education ministry officially welcomed and congratulated the team for their achievement in the championship.

Tashi Phuntsho who represented the country in the championship is the first Bhutanese to be certified, as the Asia Kumite Judge- B. Tashi Phuntsho is a teacher in Lumang Primary School in Trashigang. He was among the 230 participants to be certified as Asian karate federation judge. A total of 250 referees, judges and coaches from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka appeared the certification test.