Karate Champions Dedicate Their Wins to Joe
Posted: Fri, 25 Nov 2016
Ahmad Saleh, Yusuf Saleh and Subayre Shire from the CKI school of martial arts, in Leicester, travelled to Portugal last month to compete in the WKC karate, kickboxing and martial arts championships.
They came back with an impressive haul of medals between them, including gold for 13-year-old Ahmad, who successfully defended his world title in the kids' points fighting over 50kg category.
The accolade is Ahmad's seventh world title – but he didn't stop there, also bringing home a silver in the unified weight division and a bronze in the light contact over 50kg category.
Yusuf Saleh MBE – Ahmad's dad – won three gold, two silvers and a bronze medal, while 20-year-old Subayre came away with a gold in the national men's team event and two silvers.
Now all three have dedicated their wins to Joe Humphries, who used to train at the club. Joe was 14 when he died from sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS) in 2012, whilst out running near his home in Rothley.
Since that time, Joe's family and friends have worked tirelessly to campaign for a better understanding of sudden, unexpected cardiac death in young people, and have campaigned for compulsory CPR training and defibrillators in schools, community venues and sports clubs.
Through their charity, the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT), they also launched the Inspire Awards, a small grants scheme that helps young people to fulfil their ambitions in sport, art, business or community enterprises.
Ahmad was recently granted a £300 Inspire award to help cover his travel costs to compete at the world championships. He became the fiftieth young person to get an award from the scheme.
Ahmad said: "We were overjoyed and shocked that we managed to win so many medals. We all worked very hard. Our goal now is to hopefully be able to defend our titles next year and continue to perform well.
"Joe Humphries was my friend and my team-mate. We wanted to dedicate our medals to him and to the Trust for helping so many young people like me."
CKI coach Ismail Saleh added: "I'm immensely proud of the hard work all my students put in and this year is special for us, as it's 30 years since the club started.
"I was also very proud to be Joe's coach since he was very young, so we are very happy to dedicate these wins to Joe and his family, who have always supported our club."
Chair of the JHMT Steve Humphries said: "We are really touched by the wonderful gesture of Joe's friends at CKI martial arts club for dedicating this year's success at the world championships in honour of him. It is also fitting that the 50th Inspire Award has helped Ahmad take another important step along the way to fulfil his potential as an outstanding young sportsman and role model for the club and Leicester."
- To find out more about SADS and the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust, please visit www.jhmt.org.uk