Australian Kendo Squad call

Dear AKR members,

We extend our invitation to you to join the Australian Kendo Squad in preparation for the 16th World Kendo Championship (WKC) to be held in May 2015 in Tokyo, Japan.

Australia has a proud history at the WKC.

Sensei Rex Lawley and Mr. Darrell Morris represented Australia at the first WKC in 1970 when it was last held at the Tokyo Budokan.

au team 1 wkc lawley morris
Sensei Lawley and Mr. Morris enter the Budokan

In 2000 at Santa Clara, USA, our men’s team secured a best 8 finish only losing to Brazil by one point on a point count back. At the following Championship in Glasgow in 2003, our women’s team followed suit finishing best 8. At the recent WKC in Italy, our women’s team took the Brazilians to a one-point playoff, marking the closest an Australian team has come to best 4.

We have also had a best 8 individual finish by Kirby Smith and best 16 finishes by Vivian Yung and Daesul Chun in the women’s individual competition.

The values that have informed our campaigns mean that as an Association we have built a strong body of people who understand the commitment and work ethic required to represent Australia.

Kate Sylvester and I have an ambitious plan to build on Australia’s current standing and break through to the next level.

I have been a member of five Australian squads and part of three Australian teams. This gives me 14 years of experience preparing for, and competing at, the WKC. With my record as Victorian State Team Coach (2004, 2010, 2011) I have the credentials to lead the squad and the team to the WKC.

Kate Sylvester has represented Australia at five WKCs. She has been Coach and Assistant Coach of the Victorian Team (2009, 2010, 2011). She is currently completing her PhD field research at Osaka University of Health and Sport Science (Osaka Taiku Daigaku). In this capacity, she has direct professional contact with the University coaching staff. Furthermore, she has trained with the Osaka Metropolitan Police and has close connections with Nippon Sports Science University (Nittaidai) where some previous members of the Japanese team train and instruct. Her direct access to this body of knowledge will be valuable for Australia’s campaign.

What being a squad member means for you:
• The chance to train and compete against Australia’s most talented kendo shiai-sha
• The opportunity to be exposed to leading training methodologies from elite kendo organisations in Japan as well as cutting-edge thinking in Australian coaching and sports science
• Access to the experience and lessons gained from five WKC campaigns

The three criteria required to join the National Kendo Squad are:
1. Current and fully paid AKR membership
2. Current grade level of shodan (1st) Dan and above for men
3. Current grade level of ikkyu (1st) Kyu and above for women

If you do not meet the criteria, but feel you have a strong reason to be a part of the squad, please contact us to discuss.

We are committed to providing AKR members with the greatest opportunity to be a part of the squad, to improve their own kendo and in doing so, further improve Australia’s international record.

To sign up for the National Kendo Squad, please submit the following to kendo.team.manager@kendoaustralia.asn.au by Monday June 10th, 2013:
• Your full name
• Your current grade
• The name of your club
• Your phone number and email address

Finally, we would like to hear from any club leaders with members they think should be a part of this squad. Please contact us to discuss.

We look forward to receiving your applications and your recommendations.

Yours sincerely,

Arpad Maksay, National Team Coach
Kate Sylvester, Assistant Coach
Bonnie Lai, Team Manager

Contact the Team Manager