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Fil-Japanese ace Junna Tsukii retires from karate, shifts to MMA

Former Southeast Asian Games champion Junna Tsukii retires from karate as she will be pursuing mixed martial arts, the Filipino-Japanese athlete announced Wednesday, June 12.

Junna Tsukii (Facebook post)

The 32-year-old Tsukii expressed gratitude to all her fans who have supported her colorful career since she was seven years old.

“Thank you for your continued warm support. I have decided to graduate from being an active karate athlete, which I have been doing for 26 years, and switch to mixed martial arts (MMA),” Tsukii wrote in a social media post.

“Although the stage will change, I will continue to challenge myself with all my might so that we can continue to be excited together with everyone,” she added. “So I would be happy if you would continue to give me your warm support.”

Tsukii began her karate journey at a very young age and became one of the best young athletes in Japan.

At 17, she had a surgery on both of her knees but that did not hinder Tsukii to be part of the Philippine national team.

However, the former Takushoku University standout had multiple surgeries in her 20s which greatly affected her performances.

Despite the challenges, Tsukii plucked the gold medal in women’s kumite 50kg event of the 2022 World Games in Birmingham, USA, and a silver in the 2021 Asian Championships in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

“You’ve worked hard, so I guess it’s okay to live a quiet life now,” she continued.

“I just want to fly around the world and go crazy to death and apply more to my life. Excited to do more with everyone,” she concluded.

Tsukii will have her MMA debut against Japanese Ruka Sakamoto on Aug. 31 in Odaiba, Japan.

Credit belongs to : www.mb.com.ph

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