By Gavin Staindl
JOSEPH Busacca never expected to kick up much of a fuss at the Goju-Kai Karate Australian Nationals but since his return from Sydney last week, the Gembrook resident is beginning to leave his mark.
Joseph, who attends high school and karate practices in Pakenham, last week returned from the three-day event where he took out gold in the age category and led Victoria to a team gold medal.
He also won silver in the open weight competition and finished with a bronze in the kata, which is a non-contact freestyle event where points are awarded on the style of the competitor’s fighting moves without the interference of an opponent.
The tournament was Joseph’s third interstate tournament but his first at national level and as such, the 14-year-old was unsure what to expect.
“I was pretty nervous … I was aiming to win the weight class but I was just out there to have a go on the other ones,” Joseph said.
“I surprised myself and surprised heaps of others.”
“I have always come in second or third so the fact I did so well compared to previously is the highlight of it all,” he said.
Despite training between eight-10 hours a week from Monday to Friday, nothing could have prepared him for the nine gruelling rounds that he endured over the three days.
“By the end of it I was cramping everywhere and I just wanted to sleep,” Joseph said.
Joseph credits his success so far to his desire and patience and says that his next goal is to make the Australian team in time for the World Championships next year in Greece.
“You have to be the best in your category because only the top fighter in Australia goes through from each category.”
By Gavin Staindl