Sterling proves her worth for Sunderland

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HOLLY STERLING made it seven in a row at the British Karate Championships, as the Sunderland martial artist came away with a double gold.

Sunderland’s Sendai Kushiro Karate enjoyed a medal-laden spree at the event in Birmingham, with Sterling leading the way.

The 26-year-old took the top prize in the Ladies Kata (set form) event for the seventh successive year before earning a second gold in the club team Kata discipline, with Sendai team-mates Beth Nicholson, 18, and Sam Light, 19.

Nicholson also reached the final of the Junior Female Kumite (fighting) discipline, but was pipped to the gold by current World and European champion Rebecca Rawcliffe.

Jamie Allan, 13, produced a fine display in the Boy’s Kumite event to be crowned British champion after edging out Ashington’s Louie Cummings in the final.

Bronya Burnikell, 11, and Eliana Rooks, 13, were making their British Championship debuts and both were among the medals.

Rooks narrowly missed out on the final after an extension and ended the event with a bronze. Meanwhile, Burnikell, went one step better and took silver.

There was a last gold for Sendai in the Children’s Team Kata where Matthew Gibson, 12, Alice Jewitt, 13, and Allan outscored their opponents in the final.

Coach John Bruce said: “I am very proud of all of our competitors, they continue to develop and are a credit to our club.

“Their performances on the day were excellent and they deserve all of the success that comes their way.

“It is through lots of hard work and dedication that they continue to develop to such a high standard”.

Anyone interested in joining the club should contact (0191) 3854851 or sendai@hotmail.co.uk.