By Duncan Mlanjira
Malawian Taekwondo athlete, Yamikani Guba, who is serving in the British Army, won the silver medal at the London International Open championships held at Lee Valley Athletics Centre on Sunday organised by the Universal Taekwondo Federation (UTF).
Yamikani represented his British Army Taekwondo team in the heavyweight category +87kgs, had four KO’s and lost in the extra time of the finals stage.
Guba says he is now looking forward to the British National Championships which will be held in November in Manchester and is also eyeing to represent Malawi at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics qualifications games to be held in Rabat, Morocco in February 2020.
Guba, who holds a 4th Dan Black Belt in taekwondo from the World Taekwondo Federation, has represented Malawi Taekwondo team in recent World Taekwondo Championship held in Manchester in on May 19 and also in the 2016 Rio Olympics qualifications which was held in Agadir, Morocco.
Originally from Blantyre District, he also holds a 2nd Dan in both Judo and Karate and a 1st Dan in Kendo.
“I learnt Martial Arts at Blantyre Youth Centre (BYC) at the age of 10 at the inspiration of my family members,” Guba said.
“I relocated to UK in 2004 to study the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM-postgraduate) and thereafter I decided to join the British Army in 2007 and got posted to Germany after completing my training.
“I joined the British Army Martial Arts team in 2008, competing in both Taekwondo and Kendo at international and national level.”
In 2016, the British military awarded Guba with the title of the best senior fighter for its Taekwondo team in which he is the captain.
Based in Larkhill at the Royal School of Artillery as a Phase 2 Instructor, he has achieved many medals over the years on both national and international level of fighting.
This is not the first time for Guba to be honoured by the British military in the past as he was named the third best British Military Sportsperson of the Year achiever.
“My advice to the young generation is to keep fit in order to improve physical health, lifelong well being, build self esteem and confidence and all in all been competitive hence aiming to represent Malawi in any sport.
“And another thing, stay dedicated to sport which will reduce the number of young people off the streets doing nothing.”
Guba once was national taekwondo coach and one of the founders of Taekwondo Association Malawi at a young age.
“I am proud that some of my old students are running the affairs of the association and I aim to continue promoting more of the sport amongst the youths.
“I also would like to thank my family and friends who always support me in my sport and Malawi National Council of Sports and Malawi Taekwondo technical team in considering me to be representing Malawi.”