Zim Ninja Academy invades UK for World Martial Arts Champs


HARARE – Zimbabwe Kobudo Team has landed in England ahead of the World Martial Arts Championships to be held in Hull from 20 to 22 October 2023.

The Tournament will include various styles, categories and forms of martial arts that are point fighting, full contact, light contact, forms, muay thai, Boxing and weaponry among others.

Speaking on behalf of the team, Wilfred Mashaya who is the president of Zim Ninja Academy said the Zimbabwe Kobudo Team has been doing well in weapon/ weaponry competitions thereby raising the country’s flag high in sports in previous years.

He said the tournament is their first physical international (World) tournament after the COVID-19 pandemic and they are hoping to do their best for the nation.

“Building up to this World Championships, we should have sent a team of more than 10 athletes but due to lack of funds and sponsorship, we managed to send a team of two athletes.

“We hope that through our performances, the corporate world will chip in to support us as we are on a mission to continue raising the country’s flag high around the world and make our nation proud,” said Mashaya.

The Zimbabwe team will be participating in weaponry categories and the martial arts weapons include tonfa, sai, bo, kama and nunchaku.

Zimbabwean team is made up of two athletes who are Wilfred Mashaya and Vincent Fambira.

Mashaya said, “During Covid-19 era, we participated in more than 10 International Virtual Weapon Competitions and bagged more than 200 medals in total from 2020 to 2022. The competitions had the balance of both male and females. Kids were also part of that team which were made up of 15 athletes which was selected for the 2020 to 2022 Competitions.”

The sport of kobudo/weapons has been making a big impact in Zimbabwe since 2016 when Mashaya conquered Russia in the sport and later pioneered it in Zimbabwe.

He went on to be crowned the 2018 Zimbabwe Sports Person of the year and in 2019. Mashaya became the first Zimbabwean male to clinch the prestigious Regional Sportsman of the year Award in Namibia.

Mashaya said his trip to South Africa in August this year where the team he was coaching bagged 22 medals was a way of measuring how his team would perform among regional participants.

The multi-award-winning athlete has always brought glory and joy to the country through sports and has high hopes that he is going to do the same this time with his student Fambira.

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