The Philippine karate community is awash with excitement after the International Olympic Committee has included the Japanese martial arts sport among shortlisted events in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics.
Philippine national coach Okay Arpa, who is chiefly responsible for the gold-medal win of Fil-Japanese Junna Tsukii in the recent World Games, was among the first to post the news on social media.
“Motorsports, cricket and karate are among the nine sports invited by Los Angeles 2028 to present their case for inclusion at the Olympics,” said Arpa, a former Turkish karate champ making wonders for Philippine karate as a foreign coach.
If Arpa and Tsukii continue their journey together under the Philippine flag for the next six years, a karate medal in the Olympics is not impossible.
With Arpa guiding the Japanese-Filipina, the Philippines won its first medal in the games—a shining gold—courtesy of Tsukii.
Tsukii is more excited and vowed to do even better.
“We have high expectations for the development of karate if it makes it to the Olympic Games, and if it really happens, I will do my best to try it,” Tsukii told Manila Standard via private message.
According to reports, karate is among the nine sports invited by the Los Angeles 2028 organizers to present their case for inclusion in the Olympics.
Baseball-softball, lacrosse, breaking, kickboxing, squash, and flag football were also granted permission to submit Request for Information proposals for the sports’ program review.
Left out of the shortlist were Sambo, flying disc and teqball, which also submitted their bids to be part of the 2028 Olympic program.