Croatian world champion Ivan Kvesić has revealed he hopes to win the gold medal on home soil at the European Karate Federation Senior Karate Championships for the first time, with the competition set to start in Poreč tomorrow.
He will look to continue his form from the 2018 World Championships, when he won the men's under-84-kilogram gold medal in Madrid.
The world number three Croatian karateka expressed his anticipation for the event at the Žatika Sport Centre in an interview with the World Karate Federation.
"It is a huge honour to represent my country in my homeland," said Kvesić.
"I will try to do my best to win the gold medal at the event."
The Croatian won silver at the 2018 European Championships in Novi Sad and the bronze in 2019 in Guadalajara.
This will be the last chance for athletes to win points in the qualification bids for karate's Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020.
Two spots will be reserved for the top athletes in the men's under-84kg, with another two coming from the over-84kg rankings.
Both weight categories are due to compete in the over-75kg category at the Games.
Another three positions will come from the World Olympic Qualification Tournament, scheduled to take place in Paris from June 11 to 13, with another two possibly coming from continental places or the Tripartite Commission.
The Olympic standings close on Monday (May 24), the day after the conclusion of the European Championships on Sunday (May 23).
Kvesić added his bid to qualify for the Olympics and win the gold medal.
"Hopefully, karate will be represented in the best possible way in Tokyo," he said.
"I have huge expectations ahead of the Olympic event and I hope that I will be able to win a medal there.
"I want to write the history of the sport by taking the gold medal in Tokyo."
Elimination rounds are scheduled to start tomorrow for the European Championships, concluding on Friday (May 21), with medal bouts in individual and team competitions taking place over the last two days.
There will be eight men's and eight women's categories at the Championships, including team events in kata and kumite.