Following a very long four days at the 2023 ICO World Championships in Hull, England we reflect on what can only be described as a fantastic tournament.
The Championship held at the amazing Allam Sports Centre at Hull University catered for 550 competitors from 18 different countries with over 1400 starts in a multitude of different fighting and forms disciplines.
The USKA Fight Factory contingent of 11 fighters included Elijah Brown, Zain Amer, Julia Glowacz, Maryam Sarfraz, Kaifah Imran, Ehsaan Mahmood, Nikita Raubiska, Muzaker Rehman, Shakeel Hussain, Ateeq Al Rehman and Mohammed Usman and were accompanied by coach Qasim Beg and USKA Chief Instructor Neil Kelly.
After earning selection at the ICO British Championships in June and then attending the monthly Team England Squad training sessions first with USKA and then with the rest of team England they went into the Championships 100% prepared and we knew that if they performed to their capabilities they would do themselves, their club, their families and their country proud.
In some career best performances against some ridiculously tough and capable competition from all over the World our fighters performed our of their skins drawing acclaim and admiration of the officials and many of the other countries coaches and National Reps which is a testament to how hard our team worked to prepare themselves for the task at hand.
On the final night of the tournament on Sunday and In the main event of the closing fight Gala USKA's own Golden Boy Shakeel 'Showtime' Hussain fulfilled a lifetime ambition of becoming a Gala World Title Belt holder when he put on a master class of Full Contact Kickboxing beating France's Slimnae Bouteiller for the -60kg Full Contact Amateur World Title by Unanimous Points Decision.
Shakeel punished the French man from start to finish of the contest and looked absolutely amazing picking up the first of what God Willing will be many World titles for this precocious talent.
We finished the Championships with an unbelievable 42 medal tally 32 Gold's, 6 Silver's, 4 Bronze's and a -60kg World Championship Belt Holder.
USKA had the highest medal count from all the individual clubs taking part in the Championships and if that was not impressive enough we had five of our fighters in the top 10 positions of highest medal count... 1st Place, Kaifah Imran (6 Golds, 1 SIlver), 2nd Place, Zain Amer (6 Golds), Joint 4th Place, Nikita Raubiska (5 Golds), Joint 7th Place, Julia Glowacz (4 Golds), Joint 10th Place, Muzaker Rehman (3 Golds, 1 Silver).
We would like to say a big thank you to the Andrew and Fiona Hennessy at the ICO for organising such an amazing tournament, The ICO officials at the event for helping it to run smoothly and for keeping all our fighters safe, The Supporters and parents of our fighters for the sacrifices you make to allow our fighters to be great and last but by no means least our Team of coaches and training partners at the USKA Fight Factory who helped prepare our fighters achieve such an awesome Gold Rush.
You all are truly amazing and we are so proud to be part of such an amazing set up.
Germany 2024! Let's do this!!
Click Here To See Some Pictures From USKA's Time At The Event
Click Here To Watch Shakeel 'Showtime' Hussains Successful World Title Challenge