10th International Festival, Kawasaki City, Japan.

Team managers Danielle Jones and Mick Pratt have led the most successful team in the BAA’s history. Both are retiring this year from team management and will leave a class act to follow. We thank them for all the excitement and thrills they have given us. Here Danielle gives us a crisp account of the last international competition of their joint stewardship.

This year was an outstanding year. With the competitive Aikido world split in two following the SAF leaving the JAA last year, and with a number of our previous squad players unable to attend due to work commitments, we had certain reservations about the competition.
However, it was reassuring to realise that there was a good number of participants at the competition, with over 400 competing, including 28 men’s randori teams and a very high
standard of participants. At the competition itself the BAA team was truly amazing. There was a great sense of team spirit (quite unlike anything we had experienced before). We are immensely proud of the commitment, effort and skill level demonstrated by each and every member of the team, who expertly represented both the association and the country.

Certain members of the team excelled to produce some brilliant displays of Aikido, both in Embu and Randori events, standing out in the world of sports Aikido. The team was complimented by a number of groups and individuals from around the world for its level of skill, technical standard and spirit. We achieved the best results in Japan since being in management, winning medals in eight out of the nine disciplines. It is with deepest regret that this year will be our last in management. The role has brought great value to our lives and it has been a great privilege to watch some of the best competitive practitioners in the world grow as Aikidoka, as individuals and as a team.


Leading up to the 10th International Tournament, we held fourteen squad training sessions from January 2012 to August 2013. All the sessions were held at Loughborough University. Between April 2012 and September 2012 we invited guest instructors to coach, including Gitte Wolputt, Phil Newcombe and Marco Crispini.

Team selection, which was announced at the August Squad session in 2013, was based on individual performance at these sessions, as well as at the competitions and courses. Each
year the squad releases a National Team Pack at the beginning of the training season which outlines entry requirement for each of the National team tiers – National squad, National team, BAA team.

National Squad Competitors

  • Mick Pratt
  • Danielle Jones
  • Jermaine Liburd
  • Laura Beardsmore
  • Paul Carr
  • Natuley Smalle
  • Adedoyin Ogunbiyi
  • Scott Pearce
  • Phil Hargreaves
  • Sarah Fletcher

National Team Competitors

  • Gareth Bottomley
  • Martin Hall-May
  • Robert Price
  • John Parker
  • Seb Jackson
  • Daniel White
  • Andrew Rigby
  • Fred Kamara
  • Nathan Lomax-Cooke
  • Morgan Murphy

BAA Team Competitors

  • Daniel Ramsden
  • Chelsie Gavigan
  • Callum Aldridge
  • Joe Ockenden
  • Paul Myhill
  • Wayne Cooper
  • Leo Smalle
  • Phil O’Hara

Summary and Future

Throughout the year the team worked extremely hard with the majority of players attending most of the training sessions as well as attending regular club practice and competitions. The team spirit was extremely strong and all players displayed a very positive attitude.
The team selection as well as the dedication and hard work of the players resulted in outstanding achievement at the International Tournament.

The tournament presented certain challenges to the team, with new refereeing and judging procedures being announced the morning of the competition. Both embu and randori refereeing changed significantly, with embu being marked on a points system and some significant randori rules being changed. The teams were outstanding and displayed their prowess in adaptability, expertly overcoming last minute changes.

We wish to thank Dominic Cheshire for his support to the team as Team Medic. We also would like to thank Bob Jones and Garrett Baxter who attended as referees. A big thanks
to the executive committee for your continued financial support to the team. It means a great deal to players who are able to travel around the world to represent that association. It is always much appreciated.

It is with regret that we will resign from the post of National squad managers following the International tournament in Kawasaki. The role demands a great deal of work and both
emotional and time investment, which we feel unable to continue in the future. We believe that as a new generation approaches, attracting younger players to the squad, new management will bring a fresh new outlook with new motivation and ideas. We would like to thank the players who have supported us over the years – without your commitment, dedication and hard work we, as a team, wouldn’t have achieved the success we have over the years.

We have been immensely proud to be the BAA National squad managers and to represent such a talented, skillful and brilliant group of people.

Seminar by Bob Jones

Bob Jones Sensei (UK – Leeds) presented a seminar.

Competition Days

Saturday saw the start of the competitive events for 10th International Tournament, with the qualifying rounds completing on Sunday 22nd September. In total there were over 400 Aikidoka that took part in the tournament.

The semi-finals and finals for all the events will be held on Monday 23rd September.

Members of the BAA team are through to the semi-finals or the finals for all but one event – four pairs in the final for Dai San and Open kata (free style), three pairs in basics, Kongo team in the semis, men’s and women’s randori teams and Laura Beardsmore, Jermaine Liburd and Natuley Smalle in semi final of individual randori.

These are the results for the BAA team that overall won 3 Gold, 2 Silver and 5 Bronze medals.

Dan Junanahon
Bronze – Sarah Fletcher and Andrew Rigby

Dai San
Bronze – Mick Pratt and Paul Carr

Open Kata
Silver – Mick Pratt and Paul Carr
Bronze – Jermaine Liburd and Daniel White

Individual women’s randori
Gold – Laura Beardsmore
Bronze – Natuley Smalle

Individual Men’s Randori
Bronze – Jermaine Liburd

Women’s Team Randori
Gold – Laura Beardsmore, Natuley Smalle, Danielle Jones and Sarah Fletcher

Men’s Team Randori

Silver – Paul Carr, Daniel Ramsden, Jermaine Liburd, Phil Hargreaves, Doyin Ogunbiyi

Gold – Danielle Jones, Dan Ramsden, Mick Pratt, Paul Carr, Laura Beardsmore, Jermaine Liburd and Doyin Ogunbiyi

Congratulations to everyone in the BAA Team that completed.

View results from this 10th International.