Judo players battle for Australian titles selection

PREPARE for some of the best judo players in the state to descend on the area this Sunday for the 2014 Shoalhaven Open Judo Championships. 

FLIP SIDE: Bomaderry twin brothers Sam and Zach Fergusson are expected to compete this weekend.

FLIP SIDE: Bomaderry twin brothers Sam and Zach Fergusson are expected to compete this weekend.

Shoalhaven Heads Bushido Judo Club members and parents are again officiating and organising the event, which will see over 200 competitors play for medals at the Bomaderry Basketball Centre.

The event, which has been held every year by the local club, is just one of four

selection tournaments for the Australian Titles, to be held in June at WIN Entertainment Centre.

Shoalhaven Heads Bushido club coach Bruce Fagan has been running the tournament for 16 years.

“It only started off small, but it has just grown and grown,” he said.

Fagan said that due to the size of the competition, Judo Federation Australia has included it as an Australian titles selection for the past four years, joining the ACT International, Queensland International and NSW State Titles. 

“People can’t always travel up to Sydney to compete so you have to have one on the South Coast,” he said.

“Our club is one of the biggest in the federation so they decided to include it [Australian selections] down here.”

The Shoalhaven Heads Bushido Judo Club will enter 16 competitors, including Youth Olympic gold medallist Tinka Easton, Queensland International medallist Dario Simic, and ACT International medallist Shekea Potter.

Fagan encouraged spectators to come and watch the sport and support the local competitors.

“For the kids it’s character building, confidence building, and they get to learn self defence in a safe environment,” he said.

Doors open at 8am for a 9am start.

Fagan thanked the support of the parents, especially tournament director Brent Easton, as well as the Shoalhaven heads Bowling Club, Stocklands and Shoalhaven City Council.