JUST IN: Filipino karate champion James De Los Santos climbs to World Top 6 on Kata Rankings

HSBC Philippines
Filipino karate champion James De Los Santos
James De Los Santos won Gold in his first virtual tourney and nabbed Silver in his second. Photo from James De Los Santos Facebook.

Filipino karate champion James De Los Santos has climbed to the Top 6 spot on the World Virtual Kata Rankings after his excellent showings in two e-kata tournaments held amid the global community quarantine that disallowed live games to stop the spread of coronavirus disease.

De Los Santos finished with a silver in the SportData E-Tournament World Series – Kata #2 finals held Sunday, May 24, 2020. The Filipino national athlete competed against 31 other competitors from 23 different countries in the e-kata tourney that began May 12.

The 2017 Southeast Asian Games bronze medalist of Team Philippines bagged 2nd place in the e-Kata individual male seniors division after bowing to Portugal in the finals of the virtual tourney that had judges scoring the video recordings of participating athletes.

De Los Santos defeated competitors from Ireland (1st round), Poland (2nd round), Hungary (3rd quarterfinals), and Finland (semifinals), before being pitted against World No. 2 Eduardo Garcia in the finals.

“It was a close fight, and ended up settling for silver. But I’m still very happy with the result, since it gives me more reasons to continue training amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as this being my first time competing in a virtual world competition,” De Los Santos wrote in a Facebook post about his competitions.

De Los Santos also announced that with the Silver medal win, he is now ranked World No. 6 in both the e-Tournament World Series Ranking and actual World Ranking of the World Karate Foundation.

James De Los Santos first announced his joining e-Kata tournaments on April 20, after winning 1st place in his first-ever virtual tournament at the Palestine International Karate Cup officiated and viewed by WKF referees.

De Los Santos shared his experience in joining e-Kata and encouraged fellow athletes to continue competing. “All you need to do is find a tournament online, sign up, and send a video of your best kata performance (make sure you’re in a safe place). Then they will judge your performance like how it’s done in the actual tourneys. They don’t tell you who your opponents are, which makes it more exciting.”

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Filipina karate artists Jamie Lim and Joane Orbon nabbed double golds at the Karate Olympic Qualifiers in Ukraine. Lim also scored gold medals for Team Philippines at the 30th SEA Games.

SEND CONGRATULATIONS in the comments below to James De Los Santos for nabbing the Virtual and Actual World Top 6 spot in Karate!

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Aurora Quadra-Balibay
Angie is a self-confessed reformed news critic who vows she has finally found infinite value in delivering the good news. She teaches students of all ages how to make the important interesting for audiences across media platforms.