Sandra Sanchez Olympic Gold

Spain's Sandra Sanchez gained her own unique piece of martial arts history Thursday when she became the first ever Olympic karate gold medalist winning the women's kata competition at the Tokyo Games. The 39-year-old reigning world champion scored 28.06 to finish .18 points ahead of Japan's Kiyou Shimizu, who took the silver.

In kumite, France's Steven Da Costa defeated Turkey's Eray Samdan 5-0 to capture the men's 67 kg division while Bulgaria's Ivet Goranova beat Ukraine's Anzhelika Terliuga 5-1 to win the women's 55 kg category.

In wrestling action the United States captured gold as David Taylor defeated Iran's Hassan Yazdani 5-4 to nab the men's 86 kg freestyle division. Zaur Uguev of the Russian Olympic Committee beat India's Ravi Kumar Dahiya 7-4 to win the men's 57 kg freestyle event while Japan's Risako Kawai won the women's 57 kg category 5-0 over Iryna Kurachkina of Belarus.

That a director of my city's opera company would call me seemed a little odd. There are probably some monkeys who know more about opera than I do. But the director was inviting me to lunch, so of course I went.

It turned out the company was producing a performance of Madame Butterfly, the Puccini opera that tells the story of a doomed love between a French military officer and a geisha in early 19th-century Japan. The opera has come under fire for its stereotyped, utterly fanciful depictions of Japanese culture. The local company was trying to anticipate such criticism, and the director asked me, since I serve on the board of some organizations related to Japanese culture, what I thought.
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Dr. Craig's Martial Arts Movie Lounge

Have you ever watched a film that was just so amazing that when the sequel came out, your mind started developing great expectations and that it would be a pip, which has nothing to do with a Charles Dicken's novel, yet a movie that could be a real humdinger?

In 2017, one of the most engaging and exciting elements of the Sammo Hung and Vincent Zhao starring God of War is that it was a remake of Jimmy Wang Yu's classic kung fu flick Beach of the War Gods (BWG; 1973). This gave me the perfect opportunity to see how a film on the same subject was handled by two Chinese filmmaking eras 44 years apart and how the fight choreography was used to tell the hero's story.

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Alexander Volkanovski retained his UFC featherweight title by unanimous decision over Brian Ortega in a wild and bloody brawl Saturday night at UFC 266 in Las Vegas. After the two fighters exchanged hard leg kicks early on, the action heated up in a third round that saw a battered and bloodied Ortega suddenly drop an off-balance Volkanovski with a punch then sink in a guillotine choke from mount. Volkanovski escaped but Ortega eventually snagged a tight triangle choke. Volkanovski again escaped and landed brutal punches that looked like they might stop Ortega.
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