The PSF UK took part in the 35th Belgian Open Championships in Schoten from 5-6 May, 2018, & came back with a Gold medal. The Belgian Open is the biggest annual Silat Championships in Europe, & is open to Clubs as well as National Teams from all members of PERSILAT across the world.
This year, competitors came from:
On Saturday morning, the Opening Ceremony began with awe-inspiring performances from IPSI’s Demonstration Team. These were followed by speeches by H.E. Mr Yuri Thamrin, the Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia to Belgium, PSF UK President Mr Aidinal Alrashid (in his role as President of the European Pencak Silat Federation) & by Mr Ludo Pieters, President of the Championship hosts - the Belgian Pencak Silat Bond.
The competitions were in Tanding match categories for Men, Women, Boys, Girls, & also Masters categories (those over 35 years). The fighters from the UK were:
Burak Yusmak drew his first fight against Indonesia, & despite being up against one of the very experienced South East Asians in his weight class, managed to win points in each round. However, he was taken down several times, so that his opponent was up on points, & went on to win the match, which meant Burak could not go on into the next round.
In male class E, the UK’s Hasan Choudhoury was up against Komang Harik, also from Indonesia. Komang had recently beaten Mohd al Juferi bin Jumarii at the South East Asia Games Test Event, so Hasan was up against a really tough competitor, but showed no sign of being intimidated. Although he eventually lost on points, he gave a performance he could be really proud of.
Djibrill Auodou was drawn against Garrush Hamza of PSHT France in the Open weight category. From the outset, Djibrill was in control of the match, he took down his opponent in each round, & resisted being taken down himself. With a superior points score, Djibrill went on to win, so that he was through to the Finals.
Finals were held on the Sunday, & Djibrill was pitched against Ben Smit of Dutch Silat club Parahyangan. Djibrill bought all his skills to this match, taking down the Dutch fighter in every round, as well as continuing to win points with kicks & punches. He went on to win a unanimous verdict from the Jury, & a Gold medal for the UK.