Ivan Kvesić Becomes Third Croatian World Champion in Karate!

Daniela Rogulj

Ivan Kvesić has become the third karate World Champion in Croatian history. 

Ivan Kvesić has become the karate World Champion in the U-84 category and reached the gold without a fight thanks to the injury of his Ukrainian rival Valeri Chobotar who was knocked out in competition on Friday, reports HRT on November 10, 2018. 

Valeri Chobotar, who received a series of unpleasant hits in Friday’s team competition, did not know if he’d been cleared by the medical team until the last minutes before the match. Ultimately, the Ukrainian team refused Chobotar a chance to compete in the final and Kvesić was declared the winner. 

In the spirit of fair play, Kvesić did not celebrate in the competition area after he was named the winner, but, as expected, there was a great celebration shortly after. This is the third world gold in the history of Croatian karate. Junior Lefevre won in 2000 in Munich, eight years later it was Danil Domdjoni in Tokyo, and in 2018, it was Ivan Kvesić in Madrid.

On the way to the title, Kvesić was free in the 1st round, after which he celebrated against Romanian Christian Marian Michalache 4-0, Dionicio Gustavo from the Dominican Republic 8-1, Belarusian Anton Isakau 4-3, Denmark’s Michel Corbalan 5-0, and Turkey’s Uğur Aktaş in the semi-final 2-1. 

In the battle for the bronze in the category up to 50 kg, Jelena Pehar lost to Austrian Bettina Plank. It was an equal duel up until the last forty seconds, and at that time, the 18-year-old Croatian took more risks, but received a kick in the head which is worth three points. Four penalties bring disqualification, and in the last seconds, they both had three. Though in the end, it was Plank to celebrate the bronze in the lowest weight category.

“I had to take risks, and unfortunately I did not succeed. Because of this, I will continue to work in the next two years,” Jelena Pehar said after the fight.

The Madrid World Cup, featuring 1117 contestants from 140 countries, will come to an end with the team finals tomorrow afternoon.

To read more about Croatia’s karate stars, follow TCN’s dedicated page here


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