James De los Santos now world’s best in e-kata
MANILA, Philippines—James De los Santos’ ascent reached its peak after the Filipino karateka claimed world no.1 status in e-kata.
De los Santos started his campaign in April at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and went on a breakneck speed to the top of the standings, accumulating 15 gold medals on his way.
It took him seven months to ultimately overcome former no.1 Eduardo Garcia of Portugal and overtake him in points, 8,950.00 to 8,575.00.
“I proudly raise this virtual flag with triumph. I am the new world no.1 eKATA player,” posted De los Santos on his social media accounts.
“When I hit the no. 2 spot back in August 6, I was behind by nearly 3000 points to no.1. I thought to myself, ‘wow that’s a big gap. How am I ever going to reach that?’ I was discouraged at first, but my kata coach Masa Saito reminded me to take it one tournament at a time.”
De los Santos previously said that he competes on a weekly basis, sometimes joining several competitions at once.
The 30-year-old not only overtook Garcia in the world standings but he also defeated the Portuguese karateka twice in his campaign.
His new goal, though, is to maintain his seat atop the standings.
“My new goal is to maintain the no. 1 spot throughout the year. This is a much bigger challenge, as there will be other eKata players who want the no. 1 spot as well. But this will keep me grinding and motivated,” wrote De los Santos.
“Mabuhay, Mga Atletang Pinoy Makapunyagi.”