Derek beats odds to scoop karate award

A SPORTSMAN with Asperger syndrome has wowed the world karate community by coming third in the Karate World Championships.

Loading Comments
Share
Print

Derek Darvell, from Hamilton, took part in the event, which held its first competition for people with disabilities, in Paris.

The 27-year-old faced competitors from 13 countries in the kata section, where the athlete performs a set series of blocks and counter attacks against an imaginary opponent.

He said: "I feel proud and my family are proud of me. To go out in front of 12,000 people and to do kata is challenging. Scotland has never had anyone take first, second or third in the WKC and to come third is a big achievement."

Asperger syndrome is a form of autism, a lifelong disability that affects how a person makes sense of the world and often brings about challenges in communication.

Derek uses karate to help break down the barriers of his condition and has already gained his second level black belt and won karate titles in the Scottish Championship and British National Open.

The second-year business student at the University of the West of Scotland hopes to become a karate instructor for others with disabilities.

He said: "Karate gives me a lot of discipline and allows me to progress into areas of my life which I'm very keen to get better in.

"The better I do in my karate, the higher I move up in areas outwith my karate.

Derek's next big competition, The International Karate Open, is in Dubai next month. However, as he is self-funded, he is asking for help to raise the £1000 he needs.

Dr Robert Moffat, national director of the National Autistic Society Scotland said what Derek has achieved "is nothing short of amazing".

Terry Connell, president of the Scott-ish Karate Governing Body and Derek's train-er for eight years said: "The Scottish karate community is hoping demonstrations of Derek's skills will help persuade the World Karate Federation to formally introduce a disability section to all its competitions."

To donate, visit Derek's JustGiving site at www.justgiving.com/derekdarvell1

Education

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on Evening Times on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

110892

Have you got a story?

Contact the news desk on 0141 302 6520 or email news@eveningtimes.co.uk
                Games news:                
                               

Putting the world to rights

                               

Gail's Gab

                               

I am convinced Scotland will become independent in five months time.

               
Free swim at a Glasgow Club pool for every reader - Click here

Entertainment

Lifestyle

Wedding
Cat’s Eyes on Glasgow

Cat’s Eyes on Glasgow

Cat Cubie’s job is to find and share with you the fabulous things the city has to offer, from gigs to gastro.

                Janice Bell                
                               

Janice Bell

                               

You Couldn't Make This Up

                               

Driven round the bend after passing the driving test

               
Michelle McManus

Michelle McManus

Columnist Michelle McManus is Sussed in the City, and loves to chat about anything and everything.