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New Milton martial artist Carla Rudkin-Guillen’s golden return to English Karate Championships

NEW Milton karate star Carla Rudkin-Guillen returned from injury in style, winning gold for the second consecutive year at the English Karate Championships.

The 16-year-old Ballard School student, who trains locally at the Southern England Karate Federation (SEKF), recovered from a wrist injury to add back-to-back English titles to her consecutive British Karate Championship titles.

The New Milton teenager, trained by her father Collin, damaged her wrist just after the British championships in April and had been out of competitive action for four months.

New Milton's Carla Rudkin-Guillen
New Milton's Carla Rudkin-Guillen

She worked around her injury as best as possible, and the doctors gave her the go-ahead just before the English championships.

After winning the English and British titles in 2022 as a cadet in the 14/15 years age category, Rudkin-Guillen now holds the English and British titles in the junior kata category for martial artists aged between 16 and 17 years.

The feat is even more remarkable as this is her first year in this category.

In addition to Rudkin-Guillen’s success, fellow SEKF member Denis Margolin won two bronze medals, one in the male cadet kata and the other in the male cadet kumite -63kg, while Paul Moinier won bronze in the junior male -76kg.

Rudkin-Guillen took the junior kata category
Rudkin-Guillen took the junior kata category

The martial artists train under SEKF founder, seventh dan black belt and former England international Collin Rudkin, and her brother Danny, another former England international and a sixth dan black belt.

Two months ago, Rudkin earned his seventh dan black belt after 35 years of studying the art of karate, and his son Danny was awarded his sixth dan black belt by 10th dan sensei Ticky Donovan OBE.

Rudkin-Guillen has a jam-packed international schedule over the autumn and winter months in her pursuit of representing England at the forthcoming European Karate Championships early next year.

Rudkin-Guillen with father and coach Collin
Rudkin-Guillen with father and coach Collin

She will travel to Mexico, Spain twice and Italy, which is financially draining. The charity Little Lives UK – which helps young athletes and disadvantaged children through community, mental health and technology support – sponsors her.

Without their help, she would be unable to compete, and any local companies interested in sponsorship opportunities should email collinrudkin @googlemail.com

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