Mexico and Brazil will battle for gold in the final of the men’s team kumite competition at the Pan American Karate Championships in Panama after further qualifying action today.
Competing at the Arena Roberto Duran Sports Hall, the Mexicans made it through by beating United States 3-2, while Brazil advanced thanks to a more comfortable 3-0 win over Canada.
Early rounds of the women’s team event also went ahead, by the end of which Canada and Venezuela had made the final.
The Canadians beat Panama 2-0 in the semi-final, while Venezuela saw off United States.
Elsewhere, action took place in various individual draws including the women’s over 68 kilogram kumite, in which Venezuela’s Omaira Molina made the final.
She advanced with a 2-1 victory over Colombia’s Shanee Torres Doncel and will face American Maya Wasowicz, a former world bronze medallist in the team event.
She beat Cuba’s Yoandra Moreno Perez 1-0 in the other semi-final.
On a strong day for Venezuela all round, another of their athletes made the final of the women’s under 50kg kumite division.
Aurimer Campos won all four of her matches, including a 5-2 triumph against Canada’s Merly Huamani in the semi-finals, and will face Dominican Republic’s two-time Pan American Games champion Ana Villanueva.
The 36-year-old will go for another gold after beating Nicaragua’s Ana Mendez 9-1.
On the men’s side, the lightweight under 60kg final will pitch Uruguay’s Maximiliano Larrosa against Brazil’s 33-year-old Douglas Brose.
Brose, who is considered one of Brazil’s greatest karatekas, has won the Pan American title five times.
He beat Mexico’s Arturo Estrada 3-0 in his semi-final and will go for his sixth gold against Larrosa, who beat another Mexican, Jesus Gerardo Herrera.