New Delhi: Indian Karatekas Aniket Gupta and Deepika Dhiman will take part in the World Karate Federation (WKF) Karate 1 Premier League 2021 which be held from March 12-14 in Istanbul, Turkey.
Based on both of their present world rankings, they have been selected to represent India. Gupta will represent India in the male individual Kata open form category, the only male individual Kata player from India as well as entire South Asia to while Dhiman in the 55 kg Kumite category.
Aniket, currently ranked 115 in the Olympic standing ranking and a four-time consecutive medalist in Commonwealth games, is one of the longest playing Indian karate players who have represented India globally and considered as an inspiration to budding karate players of this generation.
While his individual Asian ranking of 15th is the highest-ranking ever secured by any Indian male individual senior kata event. Besides that, under his watchful guidance, many karate players have made their debut and careers on both the national and international levels. He is also a three-time USA Open champion (2015, 2018 and 2019: Gold medal in TK11 and advance category)and 14-time official national federation medallist (2005 till date).
While his professional qualifications also speak of his volume with Black Belt 5th Degree from World Karate Federation – WKF (2015), Black Belt 5th Degree from Japan and Canada (2015), Black Belt 5th Degree from National Sports Federation of Karate, Certified Kata and Kumite Coach from World Karate Federation (WKF) and Asian Karate Federation (AKF) and many more. Such was his influence in Karate sports, that his name was recommended this year by National Karate Controlling Body for the prestigious Arjuna Award.
On the other hand, Deepika too is one of the senior Indian karate players to represent India on the global stage for the last 12 years inspiring a certain amount of Indian karate female players.
A Rajiv Gandhi State Sports Awardee in 2015, She won 4 back-to-back Medals in the Commonwealth games of 2011, 2013, 2015 & 2018 along with 3 South Asian medals (gold, silver, bronze). A 10-time National winner (2009 till date), Deepika held 9th rank in the Senior Asian Championship for Team Kata & Individual Kumite in 2019.
A certified Kata and Kumite Coach from the National Sports Federation of Karate (NSF), she also holds a Black Belt 3rd Degree from the World Karate Federation (2014), Japan, Canada and from the National Sports Federation of Karate (2014).
According to WKF official website, about 600 karatekas from 72 countries have been registered to participate in this grand event. Seven grand winners including local star Serap Ozcelik Arapoglu, World title-holders Sandra Sanchez of Spain along Irina Zaretska of Azerbaijan and certain nine World champions such as Jonathan Horne of Germany and Bahman Asgari Ghoncheh of Iran will be seen in Istanbul.