This was my first time attending the BCKF Junior Taikai and I was pleasantly surprised to see many young kenshi from around the Lower Mainland and Victoria in attendance. Our bogu competitors fought hard with the spirit and determination that exemplifies the Steveston Kendo Club. Although we did not place in any of the individual categories, our team placed third, losing their match to Global Kendo Club. Team members were Sasha Ito, Nano Estrada, Kent Muramatsu, Mika Iwai, and Kaito Cheung. As this group gains more experience, they will be a force to be reckoned with for the next few years. Keep up the good work guys and gals!
This was my first experience in judging a beginners division (where the participants were not wearing bogu). Many of the matches were so close it was naturally hard to choose a winner. Especially in the later rounds, the smallest mistake or “off-tim
ing” strikes made the difference. Our club was well represented with 11 non-bogu participants ranging from ages 7 to 9. We were up against some stiff competition from other local clubs. Since there are no age divisions in this category, many of our junior club members were matched up against older competitors—but age was not a factor as Steveston took home 3 of the top 4 winners in the category. Brian Miki took home the first place prize, Joshua Hung placed second, and Cole Robillard placed third. Overall all our non bogu participants showed great spirit and form throughout the competition. The months of preparation have paid off and we are all proud of this young group. Much more work is in store as they begin the preparation for their first tournament with bogu.